Friday, January 28, 2011

Jose Martí, his legacy continues

Today, january 28th , the people of Cuba is conmemorating the 158th anniversary of one of its most illustrious sons: José Martí, the national independence hero whose patriotic, anti-imperialist and revolutionary thoughts represent the essence of the Cuban Revolution and goes beyond geographic boundaries.

During his short life, José Martí (January 28, 1853–May 19, 1895) became a leader of the Cuban struggle for independence and an important figure in Latin American literature. He was a poet, an essayist, a journalist, a revolutionary philosopher, a translator, a professor, a publisher, and a political theorist.

Through his writings and political activity, he became a symbol for Cuba's bid for independence against Spain in the 19th century, and is referred to as the "Apostle of Cuban Independence." He also fought against the threat of United States expansionism into Cuba. From adolescence, he dedicated his life to the promotion of liberty, political independence for Cuba and intellectual independence for all Spanish Americans.

He was a key figure in the planning and execution of the Cuban War of Independence against Spain, as well as the designer of the Cuban Revolutionary Party and its ideology. He died in military action on May 19, 1895.

Martí is considered one of the great turn-of-the-century Latin American intellectuals. His written works consist of a series of poems, essays, letters, lectures, a novel, and even a children's magazine. He wrote for numerous Latin American and American newspapers; he also founded a number of newspapers himself.

In a speech given by Fidel Castro in l976 commemorating the l953 attack on the Moncada Barricks, the leader of the Cuban revolution expressed:

"We infinitely admire Jose Marti for his huge task of forming a revolutionary consciousness in our people. We admire Marti because he was a brilliant intellectual, an extraordinarily cultured man, an exquisitely sensitive poet, a man who consecrated his talent to the revolutionary struggle, who consecrated his life and his pen to that struggle. He was a man of word and action. We will forever thank him for what he signifies and symbolizes".

His revolutionary energy came from love and love fills the work of the Revolution that for all these years has lifted its voice to defend the rights of the poor of the earth.

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