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Haydée Santamaría and the mythologizing of a heroine of Cuban Revolution

Grant number: 16/04202-5
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2016
Effective date (End): May 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Humanities - History - History of America
Principal Investigator:Mariana Martins Villaça
Grantee:Carolina de Azevedo Müller
Host Institution: Escola de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas (EFLCH). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus Guarulhos. Guarulhos , SP, Brazil


This research intends to understand the mythologizing process of the Cuban revolutionary and guerrilla Haydée Santamaría in Cuban History. Member of the 26th of July Movement, whose actions led to the Cuban Revolution and after the victory of the rebels, to the post of president of the cultural institution Casa de las Américas, Haydée had profound political and cultural influence in Cuba, being also known and respected on leftist circles in Latin America. The documents selected for this study are biographical texts produced in official Cuban websites and in a book published in another country with the support of Cuban institutions. In these texts, the biographical narrative builds Haydée's identity as a national heroine. We intend to historically understand this process of heroization, trying to analyze the characteristics attributed to this heroine, recurrent in the descriptions of other heroines of Cuban history and Latin American. Moreover, we also plan to discuss the gender debate in this heroizing process. Finally, we intend to analyze how her suicide was interpreted and the reasons she was minimized of her role as a guerrilla, in contrast to her role as a president of Casa de las Américas, among other institutional positions.

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