Groundbreaking Spanish Literature: Nuestra América

“Nuestra América” is actually an impassioned essay from one of Cuba’s most fervent and dedicated scholars, José Martí.

Nearing the turn of the century, Cuba and much of Latin America were at a crossroads: they could fight to gain independence from the suffocating grasp of the Spanish colonizers while also fighting off the looming power of the United States, or succumb to outside influences and allow other nations to rule over them and rob Cuban nationals of their resources.

In this essay, Martí urges his fellow countrymen and women to fight, and perhaps die, for their independence. He argues for Pan-Americanism as a new philosophy to encourage unity and solidarity between all nations in the Americas struggling to overthrow their colonial overseers.

It is a magnificent piece of historic literature that lays the groundwork for today’s progress towards decolonization in many Latin American communities.

One important note for English speakers – the term “América” in Spanish oftentimes does not refer to the USA, but rather North, Central, and South America as a whole.

I highly recommend this reading for advanced level Spanish students!

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