Cuba’s Vilma Lucila Espín, One of “History’s Most Rebellious Women”

Repeating Islands

Time magazine featured Vilma Lucila Espín [along with Janet Jagan, see previous post Guyana’s Janet Jagan Named One of World’s Most Rebellious Women] in “16 of History’s Most Rebellious Women.”

Dan Fastenberg describes: Many of the leaders of the Cuban revolution were among the very Latin elites whose supremacy over the masses they set out to topple—i.e., they were male and from the professional class. Fidel Castro was trained as a lawyer, while Ernesto “Che” Guevara studied medicine. But the spirit of the rebellion was most vividly embodied by the “First Lady” of Cuba’s communist revolution, Vilma Lucila Espín. Her father was a lawyer for the rum company Bacardi, whose business exploits in Cuba were viewed by Castro’s July 26 Movement as treating the island nation like a Yankee playground. After training as a chemical engineer, including a year of study at MIT, Espín took up arms against the…

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