The first time I became interested in the Caribbean is when I browsed Facebook and found a series of Caribbean photos. As soon as I glimpsed these gorgeous photos, I was shocked by the beauty of the Caribbean?the bright sunshine, the palm trees, pristine white beaches, and crystal blue water. From then on, I became fascinated with the Caribbean, and Cuba in particular, and I am planning to travel there. However, before traveling, I am more eager to learn more about its history. So the last term, I studied Caribbean 252.

That course introduced me to the cultural history of the Caribbean region from the 18th century to the present. I developed an understanding of the broad outlines of Caribbean History. The course encompassed colonialism, slavery, emancipation, imperialism, migration, revolution, etc. From the primary sources and the lectures, I learned about some major events that happened in the Caribbean, such as the sugar plantations in the Caribbean, the slave trade, and the Haiti Revolution. In addition, you gave us many primary sources, such as diaries, films, and music. With those sources, I was able to create vivid pictures that depicted the Caribbean people’s lives during that period: the notorious slave trade, cruel torture and even brave revolt. However, since that course, I am still rather confused about what exactly was going on in specific areas. I am starving to know many more details about the Caribbean, especially what the current situation is there. Did the freedom revolution shape their lives fundamentally?

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With so many questions, I registered in this course. At first, I was curious about why you chose Cuba instead of Haiti as a case for us to further study Caribbean history. However, after reading Manuel Barcia’s book Great African Slave Revolt of 1825: Cuba and the Fight for Freedom in Matanzas, I did find some answers. Manuel regarded the rebellions of 1833 and 1843 were unique and believed that the subject …

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