100 books like Runaway Slave Settlements in Cuba

By Gabino La Rosa Corzo, Mary Todd (translator),

Here are 100 books that Runaway Slave Settlements in Cuba fans have personally recommended if you like Runaway Slave Settlements in Cuba. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Runaway Slaves: Rebels on the Plantation

Sylviane A. Diouf Author Of Slavery's Exiles: The Story of the American Maroons

From my list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a social historian of the African Diaspora. I am passionate about writing stories that have never been told. The stories I uncover detail the lives, struggles, and resistance of enslaved people. I am interested in and have written about such overlooked topics as African resistance to the transatlantic slave trade; Maroons in the American South; the experience of African Muslims enslaved throughout the Americas; and the lives of the people deported on the Clotilda, the last slave ship to the US. Much still needs to be unearthed to help form a more comprehensive history of the people who, in countless and remarkable ways, fought against their subjugation.

Sylviane's book list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Why did Sylviane love this book?

I thoroughly enjoyed this exhaustive study of American runaways that uses a wide variety of often ignored archival material.

This great book details the reasons, the places, the profiles, the strategies, and the objectives of some of the tens of thousands of people who, each year, left the plantations behind. They included Free Blacks who had been kidnapped and managed to get away.

There is quasi nothing on Maroons but, to my delight, Franklin and Schweninger show that contrary to popular belief, most runaways did not attempt to go North but remained in the South, close to their families, or in nearby cities and towns, another county, or another state. 

By John Hope Franklin, Loren Schweninger,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Runaway Slaves as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From John Hope Franklin, America's foremost African American historian, comes this groundbreaking analysis of slave resistance and escape. A sweeping panorama of plantation life before the Civil War, this book reveals that slaves frequently rebelled against their masters and ran away from their plantations whenever they could.
For generations, important aspects about slave life on the plantations of the American South have remained shrouded. Historians thought, for instance, that slaves were generally pliant and resigned to their roles as human chattel, and that racial violence on the plantation was an aberration. In this precedent setting book, John Hope Franklin and…


Book cover of Maroon Societies: Rebel Slave Communities in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Author Of Slavery's Exiles: The Story of the American Maroons

From my list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a social historian of the African Diaspora. I am passionate about writing stories that have never been told. The stories I uncover detail the lives, struggles, and resistance of enslaved people. I am interested in and have written about such overlooked topics as African resistance to the transatlantic slave trade; Maroons in the American South; the experience of African Muslims enslaved throughout the Americas; and the lives of the people deported on the Clotilda, the last slave ship to the US. Much still needs to be unearthed to help form a more comprehensive history of the people who, in countless and remarkable ways, fought against their subjugation.

Sylviane's book list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Why did Sylviane love this book?

I first became acquainted with the continental magnitude of marronage with the 1979 edition of this classic book. Richard Price, the expert on Maroon communities in Surinam, presents 21 texts on marronage in Spanish America, the French Caribbean, the United States, Brazil, Jamaica, Surinam, and French Guiana.

Sixteen pioneering historical studies were written by various scholars between the 1960s and 1970s. Five texts or testimonies by contemporaries, including Maroons themselves, were produced in the 18th and 19th centuries. Taken together, these studies and testimonies are essential to understanding the reach and significance of the maroon phenomenon in the history of Black people in the Americas.

By Richard Price (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Maroon Societies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Now in its twenty-fifth anniversary edition, Maroon Societies is a systematic study of the communities formed by escaped slaves in the Caribbean, Latin America, and the United States. These societies ranged from small bands that survived less than a year to powerful states encompassing thousands of members and surviving for generations and even centuries. The volume includes eyewitness accounts written by escaped slaves and their pursuers, as well as modern historical and anthropological studies of the maroon experience. From the recipient of the J. I. Staley Prize in Anthropology


Book cover of Fugitive Slaves and Spaces of Freedom in North America

Sylviane A. Diouf Author Of Slavery's Exiles: The Story of the American Maroons

From my list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a social historian of the African Diaspora. I am passionate about writing stories that have never been told. The stories I uncover detail the lives, struggles, and resistance of enslaved people. I am interested in and have written about such overlooked topics as African resistance to the transatlantic slave trade; Maroons in the American South; the experience of African Muslims enslaved throughout the Americas; and the lives of the people deported on the Clotilda, the last slave ship to the US. Much still needs to be unearthed to help form a more comprehensive history of the people who, in countless and remarkable ways, fought against their subjugation.

Sylviane's book list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Why did Sylviane love this book?

By placing the American runaways’ experience in a continental perspective, this well-researched book brings a fresh outlook to the increasingly popular topic of runaways.

Besides the North and Canada, the contributors examine the motivations, lives, and networks of the people who looked for freedom in all directions. Taking their lives into their own hands, they found refuge in Southern cities, the Texas-Mexico borderlands, Mexico, which abolished slavery in 1829, Indian Country, and the Caribbean.

For each destination, the contributors study and evaluate the degree of freedom, formal, semiformal, and informal, which these self-liberated men and women were able to achieve.

By Damian Alan Pargas (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Fugitive Slaves and Spaces of Freedom in North America as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This volume introduces a new way to study the experiences of runaway slaves by defining different "spaces of freedom" they inhabited. It also provides a groundbreaking continental view of fugitive slave migration, moving beyond the usual regional or national approaches to explore locations in Canada, the U.S. North and South, Mexico, and the Caribbean.

Using newspapers, advertisements, and new demographic data, contributors show how events like the Revolutionary War and westward expansion shaped the slave experience. Contributors investigate sites of formal freedom, where slavery was abolished and refugees were legally free, to determine the extent to which fugitive slaves experienced…


Book cover of Flight to Freedom: African Runaways and Maroons in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Author Of Slavery's Exiles: The Story of the American Maroons

From my list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a social historian of the African Diaspora. I am passionate about writing stories that have never been told. The stories I uncover detail the lives, struggles, and resistance of enslaved people. I am interested in and have written about such overlooked topics as African resistance to the transatlantic slave trade; Maroons in the American South; the experience of African Muslims enslaved throughout the Americas; and the lives of the people deported on the Clotilda, the last slave ship to the US. Much still needs to be unearthed to help form a more comprehensive history of the people who, in countless and remarkable ways, fought against their subjugation.

Sylviane's book list on runaways and Maroons in the Americas

Sylviane A. Diouf Why did Sylviane love this book?

This book is predominantly about Caribbean runaways and Maroons, with some brief forays into South America and the United States.

I found Thompson’s approach quite enlightening. Rather than studying marronage by country, as is usually the case, he chose an encompassing thematic approach across territories. He studies the topic in four major parts: the ideological bases of marronage, its origin and development, maroon organization, and the question of accommodation and revolution.

This panoramic view, which also offers a lot of details, helps point out commonalities but also differences between communities. 

By Alvin O. Thompson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Flight to Freedom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

African slavery in the Americas has left indelible marks on the geographical, political, economic, social and cultural landscapes of the Americas. An important part of that indelibility is marronage that involved both flight from slavery and the establishment of free communities. This book is about the struggles of enslaved Africans in the Americas who achieved freedom through flight and the establishment of Maroon communities in the face of overwhelming military odds on the part of the slaveholders. Incontestably, Maroon communities constituted the first independent polities from European colonial rule in the hemisphere, even if the colonial states did not accord…


Book cover of State and Revolution in Cuba: Mass Mobilization and Political Change, 1920-1940

Ariel Mae Lambe Author Of No Barrier Can Contain It: Cuban Antifascism and the Spanish Civil War

From my list on understanding Cuba’s turbulent 1930s.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was a history major when I left for a Havana study abroad semester in 2003, but I had not studied Cuba. My introduction was a University of Havana class on the period of the Cuban Republic, in which I sat surrounded by Cuban students. My classroom learning was aided by the public history representations all around me in the city. I was hooked. I wrote my undergraduate thesis at Yale on Cuban activist intellectuals of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and a few years later went on the begin my doctorate in Latin American History at Columbia. I have been a historian of Cuba ever since, 20 years.

Ariel's book list on understanding Cuba’s turbulent 1930s

Ariel Mae Lambe Why did Ariel love this book?

Robert Whitney’s classic work on popular politics in Cuba from 1920 to 1940 is a must for the reader interested in the history of Cuba’s 1930s, especially Cuba’s “other revolution,” the Revolution of 1933. The book covers an absolutely crucial time in the island’s political evolution, and yet this time period is too often glossed over between interest in the Cuban Wars of Independence on the one hand and the Cuban Revolution of 1959 on the other. Whitney’s book, however, follows the politics of the island from the high corruption of 1920, through anti-dictatorial and anti-imperialist struggles, to the triumphant (if short-lived) arrival of constitutional democracy in 1940. An important scholar of Fulgencio Batista, Whitney traces the Cuban leader’s political twists and turns during the era, beginning with his critical role as a revolutionary in the 1933 uprising.

By Robert Whitney,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked State and Revolution in Cuba as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Illuminates a critical period in Cuba's political evolution Between 1920 and 1940, Cuba underwent a remarkable transition, moving from oligarchic rule to a nominal constitutional democracy. The events of this period are crucial to a full understanding of the nation's political evolution, yet they are often glossed over in accounts that focus more heavily on the revolution of 1959. With this book, Robert Whitney accords much-needed attention to a critical stage in Cuban history. Closely examining the upheavals of the period, which included a social revolution in 1933 and a military coup led by Fulgencio Batista one year later, Whitney…


Book cover of The Coolie Speaks: Chinese Indentured Laborers and African Slaves in Cuba

Julia Schiavone Camacho Author Of Chinese Mexicans: Transpacific Migration and the Search for a Homeland, 1910-1960

From my list on Asian diasporas in the Americas with personal stories.

Why am I passionate about this?

Raised in a Mexican-Italian family, I grew up traveling across the Arizona-Sonora borderlands to visit my extended family. As a kid, I took for granted movement across boundaries and cultural and racial mixture, but eventually, I came to see it framed my experience and outlook. In researching the Chinese in northern Mexico, I learned that Mexican women and Chinese-Mexican children followed their expelled men, whether by force or choice, and I became enthralled. I had to find out how these families fared after crossing not just borders but oceans. My passion for reading about how the long presence of Asians in the Americas complicates our understanding of history has only deepened.

Julia's book list on Asian diasporas in the Americas with personal stories

Julia Schiavone Camacho Why did Julia love this book?

Drawing on vivid “coolie” testimonies and slave narratives, this book shows how Chinese contract laborers worked alongside African slaves in the final decades of slavery in the nineteenth century, forming cross-cultural ties and engaging in bitter rivalries as well as other experiences in between. The book features the voices of both sets of groups, including complicated commentary by slaves on the lot of so-called coolies. A powerful read, it brings to life the personal experiences of members of these groups of people during a brutal era of history.

By Lisa Yun,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Coolie Speaks as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A remarkable examination of bondage in Cuba that probes questions of slavery, freedom and race


Book cover of Monkey Hunting

Julia Schiavone Camacho Author Of Chinese Mexicans: Transpacific Migration and the Search for a Homeland, 1910-1960

From my list on Asian diasporas in the Americas with personal stories.

Why am I passionate about this?

Raised in a Mexican-Italian family, I grew up traveling across the Arizona-Sonora borderlands to visit my extended family. As a kid, I took for granted movement across boundaries and cultural and racial mixture, but eventually, I came to see it framed my experience and outlook. In researching the Chinese in northern Mexico, I learned that Mexican women and Chinese-Mexican children followed their expelled men, whether by force or choice, and I became enthralled. I had to find out how these families fared after crossing not just borders but oceans. My passion for reading about how the long presence of Asians in the Americas complicates our understanding of history has only deepened.

Julia's book list on Asian diasporas in the Americas with personal stories

Julia Schiavone Camacho Why did Julia love this book?

I have read this book more than once and each time have found myself pulled into the life of the main character, a Chinese contract laborer, and his story, which spans several generations, set across the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The novel features an Afro-Chino Cuban family and shows how they become deeply part of Cuba. It also shows how the descendants of the mixed-race couple face trials in New York City and Vietnam, depicting complexities of race, gender, family, and heritage with beautiful, painful detail and emotion.

By Cristina García,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Monkey Hunting as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this deeply stirring novel, acclaimed author Cristina García follows one extraordinary family through four generations, from China to Cuba to America. Wonderfully evocative of time and place, rendered in the lyrical prose that is García’s hallmark, Monkey Hunting is an emotionally resonant tale of immigration, assimilation, and the prevailing integrity of self.


Book cover of Back Channel to Cuba: The Hidden History of Negotiations between Washington and Havana

Van Gosse Author Of Where the Boys Are: Cuba, Cold War and the Making of a New Left

From my list on Cuba and the United States.

Why am I passionate about this?

Van Gosse, Professor of History at Franklin & Marshall College, is the author of Where the Boys Are: Cuba, Cold War America, and the Making of a New Left, published in 1993 and still in print, a classic account of how "Yankees" engaged with the Cuban Revolution in its early years. Since then he has published widely on solidarity with Latin America and the New Left; for the past ten years he has also taught a popular course, "Cuba and the United States: The Closest of Strangers."

Van's book list on Cuba and the United States

Van Gosse Why did Van love this book?

Utterly engrossing, this behind-the-scenes narrative over many decades demonstrates that the Cuban diplomats were almost always willing to move towards normalizing relations, but were repeatedly stymied by non-negotiable demands from the U.S. side. Besides that, it’s full of piquant details, involving the many non-official actors and secret meetings in New York, on the island, or in other countries. Diplomatic history rarely gets this exciting!

By William M. LeoGrande, Peter Kornbluh,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Back Channel to Cuba as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Challenging the conventional wisdom of perpetual hostility between the United States and Cuba--beyond invasions, covert operations, assassination plots using poison pens and exploding seashells, and a grinding economic embargo--this fascinating book chronicles a surprising, untold history of bilateral efforts toward rapprochement and reconciliation. Since 1959, conflict and aggression have dominated the story of U.S.-Cuban relations. Now, William M. LeoGrande and Peter Kornbluh present a new and increasingly more relevant account. From John F. Kennedy's offering of an olive branch to Fidel Castro after the missile crisis, to Henry Kissinger's top secret quest for normalization, to Barack Obama's promise of a…


Book cover of The Surrender Tree/El Árbol de la Rendición: Poems of Cuba's Struggle for Freedom/Poemas de la Lucha de Cuba Por Su Libertad

J. Kasper Kramer Author Of The Story That Cannot Be Told

From my list on middle grade for starting a revolution.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a part-time professor of English and a full-time admirer of history, fairy tales, and people who fight oppression. I’ve loved stories my whole life, and I believe that the right words can have the power to change the world. That’s certainly an important message in my debut novel, The Story That Cannot Be Told, which is set during the Romanian Revolution of 1989. I primarily write historical fiction for middle grade readers, in large part because I love researching history, but my work also often includes folklore, fairy tales, or the supernatural—and of course, there’s always an adventure on the horizon.

J. Kasper's book list on middle grade for starting a revolution

J. Kasper Kramer Why did J. Kasper love this book?

Set in late 1800s Cuba, during their wars for independence from Spain and the first wave of reconcentration camps, this entry holds a special place on my list because it’s written in free verse. I believe poetry can capture emotion in a raw, powerful way that prose sometimes can’t, and Engle’s work serves as a perfect example of this. Through alternating perspectives, this book shows readers the horrors of war alongside the power of hope and compassion.

By Margarita Engle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Surrender Tree/El Árbol de la Rendición as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

The Surrender Tree: Poems of Cuba's Struggle For Freedom / El árbol de la rendición: poemas de la lucha de cuba por su libertad is a lyrical, Newbery Honor-winning history in poems, and this bilingual edition has the Spanish and English text available in one book.

¿La Guerra Chiquita?
¿Cómo puede haber una guerra chiquita?
¿Acaso algunas muertes
son más pequeñas que otras,
dejan madres
que lloran
un poco menos?

It is 1896. Cuba has fought three wars for independence and still is not free. People have been rounded up in reconcentration camps with too little food and too much…


Book cover of When It’s Cocktail Time in Cuba

Anistatia R. Miller Author Of Spirituous Journey: A History of Drink, Book Two

From my list on folklore and fact on spirits & cocktail history.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been researching and writing with my co-author husband Jared Brown about spirits and mixed drinks for three decades. After writing more than three dozen books plus hundreds of articles about the history and origins of alcoholic beverages, you could say I am addicted to the topic in a big way. While we’ve travelled and tasted drinks around the world we’ve also amassed a few thousand books on the subject. It’s served as a launch point of our secondary careers as drinks consultants and master distillers for global spirits brands. I'm currently finishing my doctoral thesis on early-modern English brewing at the University of Bristol to put a feather on the cap of my long career.

Anistatia's book list on folklore and fact on spirits & cocktail history

Anistatia R. Miller Why did Anistatia love this book?

Privately published in 1928 by Horace Liveright, British playwright and journalist Basil Woon captured the energy that took hold of Havana during Prohibition in the USA, as Americans flocked by the thousands to drink, gamble, and party served by hundreds of Cuban and self-exiled American bartenders amid the tropical beauty that is Cuba. This book opened my eyes to clues that helped me sort out the true origins of the Mary Pickford, the Mojito, and the El Presidente. While my husband and I travelled to Havana once a year for ten years, this book guided us to the places we wanted to visit to capture the spirit and essence of Cuban cocktails.

By Basil Woon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked When It’s Cocktail Time in Cuba as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Hardback copy of When It's Cocktail Time in Cuba, by Basil Woon.


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