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Tato QuiñonesSerafin Tato Quiñones
researcher,  journalist, writer

Tato Quiñones wrote Ecorie Abakuá: cuatro ensayos sobre los ñáñigos cubanos
Published in 1994, Ediciones Unión ([La Habana]) 

He also wrote in 1994 the script for the Serie Lucumi, a series of 25 min shorts on AfroCuban religion.

He was interviewed in the Havana Times in a 9/2/09 article on his role in the revival of Norberto Mesa Carbonell's Cofradía de la Negritud (CONEG), a Cuban NGO concerned with issues of racism in Cuba.

Quiñones is a member of UNEAC, the Union of Cuban Writers and Artists. He has presented at numerous conference.

Quiñones was a member of the Abakwa lodge Ekue Munanga Efo (the lodge musician Chano Pozo belonged to).

Tato Quiñones edits and publishes the email magazine Desde la Ceiba, the organ of the Cofradía de la Negritude - we have many of the issues on this site.

Aracelio Iglesias: la historia, la leyenda…  9/1/2118 Espacio Laical: Por Tato Quiñones - [Aracelio Iglesias era militante comunista y líder sindical de los obreros portuarios cubanos. Asesinado en 1948 por el gobierno.] "Aracelio nunca fue iniciado abakua, aunque hubiera podido jurarse sin problemas en cualquiera de las potencias de La Habana. Pablo Sandoval - tambien comunista-, que era su lugarteniente en el sindicato, si lo era de la potencia Awana Mokoko Efó el Bongó Bakokó."

Serie Lucumi, 1994

Nganga Kiyangala: Congo Religion in Cuba, 1991

Afrodescendencias”, nuevo libro de Tato Quiñones, 19/3/17

En Afrodescendencias, feliz híbrido de géneros (crónicas, entrevistas, relatos, leyendas, testimonios, ensayos, epistolarios, prólogos, discursos, reseñas…), se debate de nuevo en torno a la cultura y religión afrocubanas, ahora auscultando más visceralmente temas donde alcanzan protagonismos, en determinadas épocas, cuestiones medulares en torno al vínculo entre negritud y racialidad, oralidad y esclavitud, racismo y sociedad, siempre desde cierto tono desenfadado, crítico y entre innumerables citas esgrimidas por personajes anónimos o célebres, cuyo activismo o participación en sociedades secretas como la abakuá, les ha deparado sufrimientos y anécdotas polémicas, además de haberlos enfrentad a prejuicios de disímiles funcionarios, obstáculos legales y otra serie de vicisitudes. He aquí un volumen atrevido y riguroso que intenta reivindicar, como un corazón acusador, hechos que le historia oficial a soslayado o contado a medias.

Racism in Cuba & the Black Fellowship, 9/2/09, Havana Times

Por Lucía Lopez Coll

HAVANA TIMES, Sept. 2 (IPS) - It was only a year ago that a modest monument was placed on 63 Amargura Street in Old Havana to commemorate Evaristo Estenoz, the founder of the Partido de los Independientes de Color (Independent Black Party) in 1908, and one of the leaders of the 1912 uprising that ended in bloodshed.

Although specialists do not agree on the exact number of casualties, it has been estimated that there could have been as much as 3,000 victims of the repression unleashed by then president, Jose Miguel Gomez.  Among the victims were several members of the Independent Black Party and blacks and people of mixed color that had nothing to do with the conflict.

The Independent Black Party was founded here on August 7, 1908. 
Photo: Caridad

Journalist and writer Tato Quiñones, a scholar on Afro-Cuban religion and culture, believes that recalling those events that are just now beginning to be valued by Cuban historiography is an act of justice and of historic recognition.

“For the first time this year a group of people met at 63 Amargura to recall the murder of Estenoz, on June 27, 1912,” said Quiñones.

“Some of those present are part of the Haydee Santamaría Professorship, formed by a very diverse group that includes anthropologists, sociologists, university professors, historians and people related to the world of culture.  We have come together with the goal of socializing our knowledge, encouraging the exchange of ideas and working to recover our historic memory.

“To meet these objectives, we have set out several actions aimed at rescuing certain events that have been confined to oblivion and that are not part of the official history.  We even hope to turn these actions into traditions because establishing new traditions can be easier than trying to revive others that are already dead.

“Ours is not a formal project, but one that is aimed at dusting off those niches of history related to the struggle of black people that still lie in the darkness.

“Estenoz is a very little-known figure in Cuba, as is the Independent Black Party and the uprising of 1912, which even today can be polemic if it is not placed in its proper context. People need to understand that many of those black people and people of mixed races, who fought in the wars against the Spanish colonial government, were consigned to oblivion at the end of the war and their aspirations of joining society, as equal citizens, never came to be.

“To me, the most eloquent example of what happened to those men is the case of General Quintín Banderas, who did not even receive a retired officer’s pension from the Liberating Army. When the war was over, the best work offers he received were as a mail carrier and a school custodian.  When he brought the matter to the attention of President Tomas Estrada Palma, he simply offered him a measly five pesos.

“Later, when Quintín took part in the ‘little war’ of 1906 he was captured and Estrada Palma himself ordered him killed.  This man, who had earned the rank of general fighting for Cuba, was murdered with a machete, as any runaway slave.

“The Independent Black Party aimed to establish the legal rights for black people that they were not able to obtain before or after independence from Spain.  However, with the passing of the infamous Morua Amendment, the party was declared illegal and the uprising took place.

“Some specialists state that the uprising was a strategy to press the government to re-legalize the party.  But, the events got out of control, spiraling beyond what was originally planned.  It has even been said that there was a pact with Jose Miguel Gomez that Gomez betrayed.  Or that it was Gomez himself who felt betrayed when in the eastern region of the country the rebels took the town of La Maya.  What remains fact is that there was a slaughter, and the ‘danger’ of black people was averted once again.  From this point of view, nothing was won with the uprising and black people did not gain the recognition they had hoped for.

“In this same endeavor to rescue history, we have also taken into account the events that took place on November 27, 1871. On that day, in addition to the execution of the eight medical students, there was the murder of five black Abakuas who tried to prevent that injustice.  It was an almost suicidal act, resulting in their murder.

“But history has sidestepped these events and when people march nowadays to the monument dedicated to the eight students, not once has the heroism of those Abakuas been mentioned, except for in a speech delivered by Commander Ernesto Che Guevara, on November 27, 1961, during the commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the martyrs.  So, we decided to organize our own tribute parallel to the traditional one organized by the Federation of University Students (FEU).

“Neither has history recorded the uprising of Lukumi slaves who worked in the construction of the Aldama Palace and which was very unique because those men did not have any other weapon other than their own work tools.  Foremen and managers were unable to stop the rebellion and finally a well-armed force was sent in, annihilating them all because no one surrendered.  This event was not even recorded in the history of the Aldama Palace published by the Havana Historian’s Office; although I do not believe it was a deliberate omission. Probably the author did not have any knowledge of these events because to some degree we continue repeating the Eurocentric patriotic canon.  So, we also decided to commemorate those events that took place on August 9, 1841.

“Therefore, this small act carried out on June 27 is not an isolated action, but part of a series of conscious initiatives destined to revitalize the history of the will of Cuban black people in fighting for their rights.”

From the Independent Black Party to the Black Fellowship

For writer Tato Quiñones, the resurgence of racism and racial discrimination is a consequence of everything that happened in Cuba over the last 20 years:

“An awful time for Cuban society because many of the negative tendencies that we had been trying to eliminate since the revolution [1959] began to take root again,” says Quiñones.

To clean away the persistent scab of colonialism. 
Photo: Caridad

“Up until that moment, many thought that we were wining the battle.  We now we realize that some of the viruses have stayed amongst us in a dormant state, and when our immunologic system was weakened with the collapse of the socialist camp and the consequential economic crisis, all these parasitic diseases began to sprout up again.

“The racism that exists among us is an embarrassing one, that is to say, it is generally not confessed in public, but racial discrimination practiced through exclusion and segregation is increasingly evident.

“Faced with this phenomenon, it is impossible to stand by and do nothing.  And the alarm is starting to be raised.  The topic was tackled at the recent UNEAC Congress and it has begun to be analyzed by the media.  Some actions, albeit very isolated, are being carried out, but may contribute to raising awareness of the problem.  Although ‘the problem of black people,’ as it has been wisely called, is in fact a problem of white people.

“How appropriate is the existence of an organization aimed at dealing with the black question appropriate in Cuba?  The truth is that in the country, we do not have many spaces to deal with this subject.  When I heard that efforts were being made to create an organization with this objective in mind, I thought that it was worth supporting.  Historian Tomas Fernandez did the same; and therefore, the two of us are part of the Black Fellowship [Cofradía de la Negritud], although I confess that I am not completely satisfied by the name chosen by its founder, engineer Norberto Mesa.”

Building awareness in societytop

The main goals of the Fellowship are “to foster awareness in the Cuban State and civil society of the deterioration of racial inequality which is taking place in our country, to bring about the timely and effective attention that this situation requires.”

The Presentation Letter [Carta de Presentación] circulated by email by the Fellowship is also aimed at “promoting the initiative and effort of black people to foster real and sustained advances in all fields.”

The letter also recognizes “everything the Cuban Revolution has done to eliminate racial inequality in our country,” but that the “road ahead is still very long because the fundamentals of the problem have not essentially changed.”

The Fellowship looks to other organizations created by social groups facing discrimination -such as the women’s movement- who knew how to take advantage of the new opportunities and the support of the State to consolidate advances in the elimination of inequalities.

The project is focused on promoting a national awareness on the existing racial inequality in society and implementing actions against racial prejudices; and the implementation of “a social policy that takes into account the historic disadvantage accumulated by black people and responds with concrete actions.”

“I believe that this is a serious and necessary proposal,” said Quiñones, referring to the Fellowship.  ”I may have some differing opinions about some aspects, but essentially I think that it is very worthy of consideration in all its premises.

“The Black Fellowship is not a direct descendant of the Independent Black Party or from the ‘Color Societies’ that existed before 1959.  These societies help bring about progress but they also reproduced discriminatory patterns because they were organized according to the miscegenation degree or incomes of their members.  In this sense, these societies contributed to the ‘people of color’ keeping themselves where they were supposed to be, without trying to transgress certain limits.

“I would say that the Fellowship is more the heir of the words spoken by Fidel Castro during a speech in 1960 about the situation of the blacks because before that nobody had ever referred to the need to fully integrate them into society and get rid of segregation.  And while the situation was never as savage as the United States, it was pretty bad because blacks had a certain assigned place in society from which it was very hard to go beyond.

“I don’t know if it makes much sense in repeating here that currently the majority of the Cuba prison population is black, which should come as no surprise since the same patterns of poverty and marginality continue to be followed.  Nevertheless, it should be recognized that marginality is a phenomenon that has extended throughout society.

“In Havana there are also ‘bad’ neighborhoods were police cars drive by a group of people on the corner without asking for ID or doing anything at all.  While in other areas, because of tourism or other reasons, it is much more common for the police to ask for identification from a black man without any particular reason.  It as if they told this man that ‘As long as you stay in your neighborhood there’s no problem.’  Let me be clear, these police are not necessarily white, because this is a behavior based on a way of thought that is deeply rooted in our society.

“Another problem is with the incorporation of black workers into the tourism sector.  Blacks form a minority of this sector and there have been cases where black people have not been given the job because they are told that their look is not right for the job.

“Nevertheless, there is still not an authority where one can go to file a complaint if they feel they have been the victim of racial discrimination.  Discrimination in our environment is very subtle and difficult to prove because of subjectivity.  Maybe in the future we will find a solution to deal with these problems, something that the Fellowship could play a significant part in.

“In reality, the Black Fellowship is in a stage of development.  There is a proposal circulating, by Norberto Mesa, supported by Robaina and I, and others.  Everything still lies ahead; we still don’t know how to put our objectives into practice.  We have received lots of positive feedback to the project and we hope to be able to meet soon.

“For the time being, it is an alternative proposal that we are confident we can move forward, because it is impossible to advance in the development of the society as a whole without solving the so-called black problem,” concludes Tato Quiñones.

Havana Times translation of the IPS original in

1 Comment To "Racism in Cuba & the Black Fellowship"

#1 Comment By Milagros Garcia Villamil On September 3, 2009 @ 5:20 pm

The Independent Black Party aimed to establish the legal rights for black people that they were not able to obtain before or after independence from Spain. However, with the passing of the infamous Morua Amendment, the party was declared illegal and the uprising took place.
i have a diary given to me by my father which details the story of the independistas of which 3 were my family members. This diary is over 200 yrs old and like Tato Quinones depicts the struggle of our people from our beginnings in Cuba and elsewhere. it has been discovered that we have vfamily members who were taken to Puerto Rico, New Orleans etc..i am impressed with this info and will contact him shortly if possible

Article printed from Havana

URL to article:

URLs in this post:
[1] Being a Black Male in Cuba:
[2] Black Cuban Female Blogger :
[3] A White? Cuban Woman Facing the Mirror:
[4] It’s Time to Address Racism in Cuba :


Serie Lucumi, 1994top

Serie Lucumí (1994)

Programa sobre el culto yoruba a los orishas (santería), sus divinidades, sus mitos, liturgias, sistemas oraculares, teogónicos y filosóficos que se presentan en cinco capítulos, de aproximadamente 25 minutos cada uno.

Publication details
Publisher La Habana, Cuba : Mundo Latino
Repository Fondo Xavier Clavigero, S.J. - ITESO (Mexico)
Keywords 299. 67097291 QUI, Yorubas, Santería - Cuba, Vuduismo - Cuba, Brujería - Cuba, Magia - Cuba, Religiones Afroamericanas, Lucumí - Cuba, Prácticas Culturales - Cuba, Antropología Cultural - Cuba, Religión
Language spa


Nganga Kiyangala: Congo Religion in Cuba, 1991

Nganga Kiyangala: Congo Religion in Cuba
Producer(s) Television Latina
Director(s) Tato Quinones and Luis Soto
Release Date 1991
Work In Progress No
Runtime 33 min
Format(s) none
Language(s) English
Youth Media No
Film Description
This film describes the history, rites, and practices of Nganga, the Bantu-based belief system of the slaves brought to Cuba from the Congo region of Africa, and attempts to distinguish it from the better-known Yoruba-based Santeria. The film focuses on the actions performed by a palero (priest), during his morning prayer. Includes a long interview with Miguel Barnet, author of Biography of a Runaway Slave. --

Cuba was the site of the massive importation of enslaved Africans, who carried their spirituality with them to the New World. Although many people confuse the variety of religious and cultural traditions that came from Africa to Cuba, there is an incredible diversity and variety that continue to be practiced today. This detailed documentary untangles the ties between the Santería religious practices of the Yoruba people; the Abakuá sects of the people of the Calabar; and the Nganga, Mayombe, and Palo Monte religions of the Bantu peoples of central Africa – known in Cuba as Congo. All of these religions are very fluid and adherents of one often practice another as well, but each has a solid core. The Congo religions are based in the power of Nsambi, the Supreme Being who is also a divine substance that manifests itself in every thing that exists in the universe. But the more daily practice of the Congo religions centers on honoring the nganga, ancestor spirits to whom they pay homage with tobacco, rum, candles, and animal sacrifice. With gripping footage of Congo ceremonies and testimony from scholars and practitioners, the film goes on to explain the incredible aesthetic tradition of Congo design and its influence on modern Cuban artists such as Wilfredo Lam, and the integral presence of Congo-derived music in the Afro-Cuban musical expression of rumba. Lastly, the film documents and explains the role of spirit possession in the Congo religions, showing how despite its outlandish appearance to outsiders, it is a powerful and intimate connection to the forces of life and spirituality. NGANGA KIYANGALA makes an important contribution toward the understanding of a little phenomenon: Congo religiosity in Cuba. --


Religiones afrocubanas ¿más abiertas a la diversidad sexual?  9/23/2019 SEMlac: "Durante una investigación de obras y poemas que integran el cuerpo literario y filosófico de la religión Ifá, el reconocido escritor y activista Tato Quiñones no encontró "por lo menos una, no ya referida a la unión matrimonial entre dos personas del mismo sexo, ni siquiera a la homosexualidad". Quiñones expuso algunas conclusiones de su estudio durante la conferencia "Addodis y Alakuatas en la santería: un breve intento de aproximación a la homosexualidad vista desde la religión popular cubana de los orishas", el pasado jueves 19 de septiembre como parte del "Aula de aprendizaje" que organiza el colectivo el Club del Espendrú."

Tato Quiñones nos adelanta una parte de su investigación sobre la homosexualidad vista desde la religión popular cubana de los Orishas  9/20/2019 LGBTIQ+: "A raíz de esos debates que se intensificaron por cada rincón del país, personas se preguntaban sobre cómo la religión Orisha apreciaba el asunto, pregunta qué le fue dirigida a Tato quien al no saber responder, se interesó en realizar una exhaustiva, seria y rigurosa investigación que aún no ha terminado."

Tato Quiñones: La conciencia a pie de obra, asere  3/1/2019 Negra Cubana: "Tato Quiñones es uno de los almacenes vivos de nuestra cultura, su obra oral y escrita dignifica una trayectoria singular en defensa de los mejores valores de nuestra cultura afrodescendiente. Atravesando la literatura, la música, la danza, el cine y la religiosidad, con todo rigor critico y acierto ético, con la misma sencillez y encanto con que nos explica un patakí o desenlaza concienzudamente cualquiera de los viejos conflictos raciales en Cuba; desde su trabajo en la comunidad ha entregado verdaderas obras de sabiduría, desde la humildad y el conocimiento profundo de un país. Ha sabido aglutinar a personas sencillas y a otras complejas en su profesión, juntando los esfuerzos de unos y otros en pos de un solo ideal: la lucha contra la discriminación racial y por la hermandad de todos los cubanos."

Aracelio Iglesias: la historia, la leyenda…  9/1/2018 Espacio Laical: Por Tato Quiñones - [Aracelio Iglesias era militante comunista y líder sindical de los obreros portuarios cubanos. Asesinado en 1948 por el gobierno.] "Aracelio nunca fue iniciado abakua, aunque hubiera podido jurarse sin problemas en cualquiera de las potencias de La Habana. Pablo Sandoval - tambien comunista-, que era su lugarteniente en el sindicato, si lo era de la potencia Awana Mokoko Efó el Bongó Bakokó."

Realizan curso de verano sobre Insurgencias Afroamericanas  8/10/2018 Librinsula: "Del 9 al 13 de julio tuvo lugar en la Sala Ernesto Che Guevara de la Casa de las Américas el curso de verano titulado Insurgencias Afroamericanas. Con tres conferencias diarias y sesiones de intercambio con el público asistente se abordaron diversos temas relacionados con el pensamiento, la literatura y las artes afroamericanas. Entre los temas tratados destacaron La africanidad de la música cubana, por la MsC. María Elena Vinueza; Movimientos sociales afromexicanos: particularidades y diferencias con otros movimientos de AfroLatinoamérica, por el Lic. Tomás Fernández Robaina; El refranero español en el cuerpo literario-filosófico de Ifá en Cuba, por el Lic. Serafín Tato Quiñones; Mujeres negras en la música cubana, por el Lic. Yasmani Castro y Huellas del esclavizamiento en la carne de la mujer negra caribeña: aproximaciones literarias y audiovisuales, por la Dra. Odette Casamayor Cisneros."

Libro editado en Estados Unidos aborda la racialidad en Cuba  12/1/2017 IPS: "Publicado en inglés por el sello editorial de la Universidad de Oxford, el texto de 272 páginas lleva la rúbrica de Danielle Pilar Clealand, una investigadora del Departamento de Política y Relaciones Internacionales, en la Universidad Internacional de la Florida… En sus estancias, dialogó “con varias personas que están abordando este tema con mucha dedicación y son parte del movimiento antirracista cubano actual”, dijo. Entre ellas, mencionó al intelectual Roberto Zurbano, la escritora y periodista Gisela Arandia, la cineasta y activista Gloria Rolando, además de los investigadores Tomás Fernández Robaina y Tato Quiñones."

'Si no tengo algo por lo que estar luchando, la vida pierde sentido'  7/19/2017 Diario de Cuba: Entrevista con Tato Quiñones - "En 2016 la editorial José Martí reimprimió el libro Asere Núncue Itiá Ecobio Enyene Abacuá, de Serafín "Tato" Quiñones (1942), una aproximación a la historia de las hermandades abacuá o ñáñigas en La Habana."

Los negros siguen siendo mayoría en 'los sectores económicos menos beneficiosos'  6/25/2017 Diario de Cuba: ""En todas las épocas, las personas negras han estado vinculadas a los sectores menos beneficiosos desde el punto de vista económico" en la Isla, dijo el escritor Tato Quiñones durante un panel dedicado a analizar la historia de los debates raciales al interior del movimiento obrero cubano, reporta la agencia IPS."

Activistas recuerdan héroes afrocubanos sin nombre  10/21/2016 IPS: "La actividad, organizada por la Asociación Cultural Yoruba de Cuba, el grupo Anamuto y el Cabildo Ifá Íránlówo, conmemoró los 175 años de la rebelión de esclavos y esclavas yorubas en el Palacio de Aldama, hecho acontecido un día 9 de octubre, explicó el investigador Tato Quiñones."

Spots cubanos de bien público reproducen prejuicios racistas  7/7/2016 IPS: "Representaciones sociales prejuiciadas que relacionan a las personas negras y mestizas con calificativos negativos y a las blancas con actitudes positivas, persisten en la comunicación de bien público hecha en Cuba en los últimos cinco años. Esa afirmación es una de las conclusiones de la investigación De colores. Una mirada crítica a la construcción audiovisual de la racialidad en los spots televisivos de la comunicación de bien público cubana, realizada este año por Yunior Smith, como ejercicio en opción al título de Licenciado en Periodismo."

Addressing Racial Discrimination in Cuba  3/23/2015 Havana Times: "Another gathering sponsored by the Cuban journal Espacio Laical (“Secular Space”) was recently held at the habitual venue in Havana’s Felix Varela Cultural Center, formerly the San Carlos Seminary. On this occasion, participants addressed the racial question in Cuba. The panel was made up by academics and experts Rodrigo Espina, Mayra Espina, Victor Fowler, Tato Quiñones and Antonio Martinez (from the Aponte Commission)."

Pedro Campos: De nuevo sobre la problemática racial en Cuba  3/22/2015 Havana Times: "El sábado 7 de marzo tuvo lugar otro encuentro auspiciado por la revista Espacio Laical, en su habitual sede del Centro Cultural Félix Varela en el antiguo Seminario de San Carlos en La Habana. En esta ocasión, para tratar sobre la problemática racial en Cuba. El panel estuvo integrado por los académicos y especialistas Rodrigo Espina, Mayra Espina, Víctor Fowler, Tato Quiñones y Antonio Martínez, este último de la Comisión Aponte."

Empoderamiento de sectores desfavorecidos en Cuba: Los afrodescendientes  3/7/2015 Negra Cubana: "Un grupo de conocidos estudiosos de estos temas, Mayra Espina, Víctor Fowler, Tato Quiñones, Heriberto Feraudi y Rodrigo Espina (coordinador y facilitador) presentarán sus puntos de vista sobre estos importantes temas, y a continuación quedará abierto el debate a la participación de todos los presentes."

La lucha antirracista en Cuba a debate  7/9/2013 Havana Times: "Un foro para compartir propuestas y aprender sobre los nuevos modos de activismo antirracista, descolonización cultural y lucha anticapitalista. Entre los participantes se encontrarán Mayra Espina, Tato Quiñones, Gisela Arandia, Dmitri Prieto, Maritza López Mc Bean, bajo la moderación del investigador y crítivo Roberto Zurbano."

Aponte  4/15/2013 Red Observatorio Crítico: Por Tato Quiñones - "Por medios que solamente ellos sabían –asegura Franco- y que aún guardan en secreto algunos grupos abakuá de La Habana, los conspiradores avisaron a los abolicionistas y a muchos hombres negros y mulatos –libres o esclavos- de Norteamérica, Jamaica, Santo Domingo e incluso Brasil, acerca de la revolución que se estaba organizando, y se les incitaba a imitar a los cubanos. En Cuba, la red de participantes en la conspiración se extendió desde La Habana extramuros, sus barrios e ingenios, hasta Remedios, Puerto Príncipe, Holguín, Bayamo y Jiguaní."

José Antonio Aponte resurrecto  4/10/2013 Observatorio Critico: "Tato Quiñones evocó cómo un grupo de compañeros de varias potencias abakuá hicieron un acto de recordación a Aponte y a la Asociación Antifascista Cubana en este mismo lugar en 1995, el poeta Eduardo Santiesteban declamó con una energía inspiradora, que a todos nos electrizó, un texto suyo sobre Aponte, Gisela Arandia habló del valor de hechos como estos…"

Un acercamiento a las celebraciones oficiales por el aniversario del barrio obrero de Pogolotti (y a la apatía popular)  3/6/2013 Observatorio Critico: "En la tarde del domingo 22 de febrero, asistí a un conversatorio sobre la contribución de la sociedad fraternal abakuá a la historia de Cuba, organizado por la Comisión Organizadora de los festejos por el 102 aniversario del barrio obrero de Pogolotti. Para el encuentro la Comisión barrial le encargó a Tato Quiñones que escogiera libremente una cuestión dentro de ese amplio tema."

Historia y tradición oral en los sucesos del 27 de noviembre de 1871  11/23/2012 Desde la Ceiba: por Tato Quiñones

Falso vídeo de crimen 'abacuá' revuelve a La Habana  10/4/2012 Diario de Cuba: "El vídeo en cuestión muestra la autopsia de un ciudadano blanco, supuestamente realizada en el Instituto de Medicina Legal de La Habana. "Lo que se dice en la calle es que esta persona había sido masacrada en una actividad religiosa abacuá. Que no lo quisieron admitir y él se vengó esparciendo orina y excrementos, lo que habría provocado el apuñalamiento por parte de miembros de la religión", explicó Tato Quiñones, activista de la Cofradía de la Negritud. Pero "todo eso es mentira", aseguró Quiñones en declaraciones a DIARIO DE CUBA." [con varios comentarios racistas]

Racism Finally Debated in Parliament  12/23/2011 IPS: "The question of racial discrimination was debated in the education, culture, science and technology commission, in its meetings ahead of the year-end plenary session of parliament, held Friday. "The inclusion of the racial issue on the parliamentary agenda was a long-standing demand of the Cofradía de la Negritud," said Tato Quiñones, one of the activists involved in that citizen movement which emerged over a decade ago with the aim of raising awareness on discrimination based on skin colour in Cuba."

“Ética Abakuá” en la TV cubana  11/20/2011 Red Observatorio Crítico: "Es interesante que la tv cubana comience a abordar ese controversial tema. Y es que los Abakuá tienen una “mala prensa” que los presenta como machistas, violentos, casi mafiosos y criminales. ¿Son reales esos estereotipos? Hoy Abakuá está “de moda” entre los jóvenes, muchos de quienes creen que para ingresar en la asociación hay que tener actitudes duras en la calle. Ser conocido como Abakuá es para ellos como un certificado de hombría. Al programa fueron invitados los reconocidos especialistas Tato Quiñones, Natalia Bolívar y Ramón Torres, quienes han investigado con mucha profundidad el tema."

CUBA: Varied reactions to Communist Party policy document  10/27/2011 Caribbean 360: "I think mention of the race issue is weak," said Tato Quiñones of the Cofradía de la Negritud (CONEG), an association of black people aimed at raising awareness about racial issues. "Maybe it is not given enough importance, or perhaps we put too much of a priority on it, but we believe that it is a very important issue that should be discussed seriously," he said. CONEG, which promotes periodic debates at the community level on the persistence of inequality and discrimination based on skin colour, is one of the groups that hope the national party conference will analyse the race question in depth, and will produce a working programme to address the issue."

Walterio Carbonell, un hito en la historiografía nacional  9/26/2011 Red Protagónica Observatorio Crítico: “Cuando lo lees —explica Tato Quiñones, escritor y destacado activista antirracista, refiriéndose al texto— te das cuenta de que el libro te salta en las manos, hay una voluntad de que ninguna idea se quede fuera, uno jadea con esa lectura que constituye un clásico de la historiografía revolucionaria como también lo es Azúcar y abolición, el primer ensayo marxista cubano de Raúl Cepero Bonilla a quien Walterio le sigue los pasos con esta obra.”

Anonymous Afro-Cubans Heroes Remembered for Posterity  12/21/2010 IPS: "But the deaths of the five Abakuá who died protesting their execution have been ignored by official histories, complained Tato Quiñones, the coordinator of the Nov. 27 ceremony organised since 2006 by the Haydée Santamaría Critical Thought and Emerging Cultures Collective and the Cofradía de la Negritud, an association of black people aimed at raising awareness of discrimination. The two forums are associated with the Critical Observatory, a civil society network. “Thirteen young men, black and white, died that day,” Quiñones told IPS. “Therefore we also took time to visit the university students’ monument (as well as the plaque commemorating the five Abakuá), to honour all the victims."

Reflota plan contra discriminación racial  9/2/2009 IPS: "Una carta de presentación de la iniciativa, hecha circular por correo electrónico, considera que no podrá haber un avance importante y sostenido en el aminoramiento progresivo de la desigualdad racial sin la ejecución "de una política social que tenga en consideración la desventaja históricamente acumulada de la población negra". En ese sentido, Coneg propone trabajar para que el Estado y la sociedad civil adquieran conciencia del asunto y por "asegurar la prestación de una efectiva atención a la defensa del respeto de los derechos de todo tipo de la población negra cubana". La misiva conserva la fecha de su lanzamiento inicial, en julio de 1998, por el ingeniero Norberto Mesa Carbonell, como "primer cófrade", aunque ahora se añaden las firmas de los "cófrades" Tomás Fernández y Tato Quiñones, investigadores y especialistas en el tema."

Los ñáñigos y los sucesos del 27 de noviembre de 1871: memoria histórica, dinámicas populares y proyecto socialista en Cuba  1/1/2008 Caminos: "La conspiración impersonal del silencio fue la respuesta a aquel texto de Tato Quiñones desde 1998 hasta hoy. Ocho años que se suman a los casi treintisiete que separan el texto de Tato de aquel discurso del Che –pronunciado con la vocación indomablemente transgresora que siempre caracterizaría al argentino, el 27 de noviembre de 1961–2 en que él recordó aquellos sucesos, evocados por primera y única vez en un acto público dentro de la Revolución."


Cofradía de la Negritud  

Preocupa discriminación racial en Cuba, IPS, 9/09
Activan Cofradía de la Negritud (Coneg) para crear conciencia.

 A cien años de «La Guerra Chiquita de los Negros» de 1912: Memorias de un Combatiente (PDF) en Memorias de un simposio, Ginebra, Suiza, 2012

Cuban History Time Line

AfroCubaWeb Abakuá page

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