Cover

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Contents

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xiv

It has been a long road since I took the belated decision to attend university in Havana some fifteen years ago. Many people have come to and gone from my life during this . . .

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Introduction

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pp. 1-12

In March 1843, hundreds of African slaves rose against their masters and overseers in the western Cuban district of Bemba. After killing a large number of people . . .

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1 The African Background of Cuban Slaves

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pp. 13-24

Throughout the first half of the nineteenth century, sugar and coffee plantations in western Cuba were continuously supplied with new African workers. Although the . . .

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2 Homicides, Conspiracies, and Revolts

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pp. 25-48

On July 1, 1840, Tranquilino, a slave from the coffee plantation Empresa, killed his mayoral in a quarrel. Moments later, more than fifty of his companions headed to the . . .

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3 Marronage

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pp. 49-70

On April 21, 1844, public prosecutor José del Mazo wrote to the governor of Matanzas, Antonio García Oña, about the escape from custody of the most important slave . . .

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4 Suicides

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pp. 71-83

Suicide was not rare in West and West-Central Africa.1 In fact, very much in the Stoic tradition, it was a way out for the humiliated, the disgraced, and those with incurable . . .

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5 Slaves’ Use of the Colonial Legal Framework

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pp. 84-104

On a mid-July day in 1843, José María Lucumí walked to the house of the governor of New Filipina—today Pinar del Río—with the sole idea of denouncing the . . .

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6 Disguised and Nonviolent Forms of Resistance

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pp. 105-125

The evening of September 30, 1837, was not an ordinary one for the inhabitants of the small rural village of Güira de Melena. Just after sunset, while some were preparing . . .

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Conclusion

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pp. 126-134

The attempts made by Cuban ruling groups from the end of the eighteenth century to replace neighboring Saint Domingue as a producer of sugar and coffee had long-lasting . . .

Glossary

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pp. 135-137

Notes

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pp. 139-177

Bibliography

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pp. 179-200

Index

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pp. 201-211