Fulgencio Batista

By Frank Argote-Freyre,

Book cover of Fulgencio Batista: From Revolutionary to Strongman

Book description

Pawn of the U.S. government. Right-hand man to the mob. Iron-fisted dictator. For decades, public understanding of the pre-Revolutionary Cuban dictator ""Fulgencio Batista"" has been limited to these stereotypes. While on some level they all contain an element of truth, these superficial characterizations barely scratch the surface of the complex…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Fulgencio Batista as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Fulgencio Batista is an all-purpose villain in post-1959 Cuba. On the island, he is portrayed as a corrupt and bloody despot who ignored prostitution in towns, desperation in the countryside, and gave free reign to U.S. companies, American tourists, and the mafia. Cuban exiles, many of whom prospered during his rule, see things differently. Cuba counted a large middle class, access to American cars and radios, and one of the highest literacy rates in Latin America. Argote-Freyre’s biography adds much-needed complexity. Batista was a self-made man, born in poverty, and racially mixed. He rose to a  position of power via…

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