“Cuba: who were the real fighters for freedom?” by F. Fernandez – Workers Soldiarity Federation ca. 1996

Issued by the Workers Solidarity Federation (WSF) in Johannesburg around 1996, “Cuba: who were the real fighters for freedom?” provided a history of Cuban anarchism. It was, in fact, a direct copy of the 1995 ASP (London) edition of Frank Fernandez’s Cuba, the Anarchists and Liberty (which originally appeared in Spanish in 1987),  enclosed in a WSF cover.

The new title was an obvious attempt to attract the attention of South African activists interested in Cuba, a country which then (as now) holds enormous attraction for many.  The story of Cuban anarchism provides a compelling example of libertarian labour, anti-colonial and anti-dictatorship activism; the repression of Cuban anarchism by the Castro regime provides a powerful criticism of that state.

As evident from the below scan, production values of were quite low, as most copies were made in short runs on available photocopiers.

CUBA - Who Were the Real Fighters for FreedomGet the PDF here




About Lucien van der Walt

I teach at Rhodes University, the Eastern Cape. I’m 10th generation South African, born and bred. I have long been involved in union education, and have a background in social movement and left-wing activism, the Workers’ Library and Museum, the Anti-Privatisation Forum, and the National Health and Allied Workers Union (NEHAWU). I’ve presented or published 450+ papers, including conferences and workshops, co-edited 4 journal specials (on global and African labour history, and the left), and produced five books. Southern Africa editor for the 2009 'International Encyclopaedia of Revolution and Protest' (Blackwell). I won the 2008 international ‘Labor History’ PhD thesis prize, and the 2008/2009 Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) award for best African dissertation, for my thesis on South African anarchism, syndicalism and black militants. I have also done research in Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.