• Choice 1987 Outstanding Academic Book
This book examines the early years of the Cuban Republic, launched in 1902 after the war with Spain. Although no longer a colony, the country was still hobbled by continuing dependence on and exploitation from a foreign power. Pérez shows how U.S. armed intervention in Cuba in 1898 and subsequent military occupation revitalized elements of the colonial system that would serve imperialist interests during independence. The concessions of the Platt Amendment in 1903 became the principal instrument for U.S. expansion in Cuba. The U.S. then gained control over resources and markets.
This masterly account of Cuba's history during the first third of the twentieth century links the diplomacy of U.S.-Cuban relations to the conequences of those relations for Cuba's internal affairs. . . . Graciously written, cogently argued, richly documented, clear, shrewd, and insightful in its analysis of both political and social history and building on Cuban history from the 1880s to 1902 (although the current work stands by itself), this book confirms Perez as the leading historian of early modern Cuba.
[T]he best study to date of Cuban political history from 1902 to 1934. Perez has added to his already impressive scholarly reputation.
[W]e are dedicated to Professor Perez for an eloquent and scholarly probe. His work is penetrating and highly intelligent.
Perez convincingly works out the implications of the argument and treats the Platt Amendment as an 'organic' instrumentality, fully adaptable to change. . . . Perez bases his claims on thorough and replete research into English and Spanish language sources in the United States and Cuba. . . . This book says important things about the Cuban experience.
Extensively researched, elegantly and engagingly written, this monography demonstrates Perez's mastery of Cuban politics and society between the 1880s and the present. . . . Perez's work offers a brilliant insight into the intimate relations between politics and economics. There is no finer, or more cogently expressed account in print of this critical period in the relations between Cuba and the US.
Louis A. Perez Jr. is J. Carlyle Sitterson Professor of History at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.learn more