la primera biografía en inglés del más grande cubano
the first “boom” in Martí publications happens in the 1930s, including the first relatively serious biography — that was Jorge Mañach’s Martí, El Apostol. And of course every Cuban politician worth his congrí saw aligning oneself rhetorically with Martí, regardless of one’s own political orientation, was the way to gain credibility with the public. Since the 1930s Martí has been a staple of every Cuban administration’s official discourse.
Shortly after his coup in 1952, Batista milked the Martí centennial for all it was worth, with massive public works such as the Martí monument, a tremendous centennial celebration, book prizes, and so on. And all of it was for political ends — aligning Batista as much as possible with the public memory of Martí. So to people who, rightly, get indignant over what Ripoll called the “distortions” of Martí by the Castro regime, I say that Fidel didn’t invent the Martí political scam — he just perfected it.