El Lector: A History of the Cigar Factory Reader (Llilas by Araceli Tinajero

By Araceli Tinajero

The perform of examining aloud has an extended background, and the culture nonetheless survives in Cuba as a hard-won correct deeply embedded in cigar manufacturing unit staff' tradition. In El Lector, Araceli Tinajero deftly lines the evolution of the reader from nineteenth-century Cuba to the current and its eventual dissemination to Tampa, Key West, Puerto Rico, and Mexico. In interviews with present-day and retired readers, she files stories that another way may were misplaced eternally, making a worthy archive for destiny historians.

Through an in depth exam of journals, newspapers, and private interviews, Tinajero relates how the examining used to be prepared, how the readers and readings have been chosen, and the way the method affected the connection among staff and manufacturing unit vendors. as a result reader, cigar manufacturing facility employees have been way more cultured and in contact with the political currents of the day than different employees. however it used to be not just the examining fabric, which supplied political and literary details that yielded self-education, that inspired the staff; the act of being learn to elevated the self-discipline and timing of the artisan's job.

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Additional info for El Lector: A History of the Cigar Factory Reader (Llilas Translations from Latin America Series)

Example text

Selgas y Carrasco was a clerk in an establishment in Murcia when he was called to Madrid by the Count of San Luis to fulfill a destiny that would allow him to cultivate his talent, and today he is one of the greatest men of letters in Madrid, and likewise, nearly all men of grand ideas have been sons of the working class. Similarly, in many poetic compositions, the voice calls out in a lofty tone with the hope that the young will be transformed. The following poem, “To Youth,” written by Saturnino Martínez (La Aurora, April 16, 1866), prays: cuba from cuba to spain 25 Oh!

Once the skill has been learned, however, to a certain extent, it becomes both monotonous and repetitive. Obviously, the same occurs in the different departments. The absence of noise in the various departments allows for dialogue and the exchange of ideas among the cigar workers; as a result, the workers have always enjoyed a rather high degree of culture. Since there was no machinery, and the only noise to be heard was that of the chavetas, reading aloud in cigar factories was possible thanks to the silence and design of the workshop.

Thanks to Truquin’s autobiography, we know the texts people heard. In most cases, however, it is difficult to come by inventories of “libraries” that were read aloud. The onset of reading aloud in cigar factories is contemporaneous with the debut of a weekly publication written for workers. To understand how reading viva voce was established in cigar factories, it is important to examine newspapers of the day, especially El Siglo, whose efforts were decisive, as well as inspirational, in the establishment of the practice.

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