CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Venceremos Brigade 1969-2019

Feb 16, 2018 by

Dear Brigadistas,

As we look toward the 50th anniversary of the Venceremos Brigade, members of the VB are putting together a book that will document the work of our movement and memorialize the experience of building relations of solidarity across borders. Below and attached, please find the call for submissions. Please help us circulate this call to anyone you know who has traveled with the brigade over the last 49 years. The deadline for submissions is July 26, 2018.

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CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Venceremos Brigade 1969-2019

In 1971, Venceremos Brigade was published. This book brought together writings and photographs from among the hundreds of young US Americans who traveled to Cuba with the first two contingents of the anti-imperialist political education project known as the Venceremos Brigade. In representing the experiences of a diverse cross-section of active movement people in the specific context of the Brigade, this book provided a unique look into the life and work of those who chose to become brigadistas, into the realities of the Cuban Revolution, and, perhaps most importantly, into the state of the US movement as a whole. In the Introduction, editor Sandra Levinson and contributor Carol Brightman described this book as “a strong statement on where we’re at and where we have to grow in revolutionary consciousness and behavior.”

Since the publication of Venceremos Brigade, much has changed in Cuba and in the United States, in the relationship between our governments and peoples, and in the movements of the left worldwide. The Brigade itself has changed, and adapted, in line with the evolution of these other forces. Today, the trip lasts two weeks, not two months; the Brigade is smaller, usually a group of less than 50, instead of hundreds; there is no longer a National Committee, but a loose structure of distributed leadership across a collective of volunteer organizers and activists; and the leadership and membership have shifted, becoming more black and brown, more femme, more queer, and doing more to explicitly confront the manifestations of racism and cisheterosexism that arise in the experience of the Brigade. As the structure of the Brigade has shifted and our size and capacity have waned, however, the significance of this project for Cuba and for the US movement has remained constant. The Venceremos Brigade still manifests friendship and solidarity with the Cuban people and their revolutionary process through voluntary work and educational exchange. The Brigade still refuses to travel with a license from the US Treasury Department, proudly violating the travel ban and breaking the blockade with every trip. And the Brigade still represents a unique opportunity and context for people in the movement to practice being in revolutionary community and to assess our ability to do so, “a chance to come together in an ‘ordinary’ revolutionary situation and see if it is possible for [US] American radicals…to live and work hard together in a structured, disciplined, collective way.”

To mark the occasion of the 50th contingent of the Venceremos Brigade (to take place in summer 2019), we are asking brigadistas from any trip since the first Brigade in 1969 to submit materials for a sequel. The collective of brigadistas who will coordinate to produce this book seek to honor the work and legacy of the thousands of people who have participated in building and sustaining this historic relationship between the US movement and the Cuban Revolution, and to once again use the experience of the Brigade (this time accumulated over 50 years) as a crucible in which we might forge a new understanding of where we are as a movement, and where we have yet to go.

Submissions* may include (and are not limited to):

*   Diary/Journal Entries
*   Notes from Meetings/Interviews/Etc.
*   Letters/Emails
*   Essays
*   Poetry
*   Photographs
*   Audio/Video Recordings

Send electronic submissions and any questions to bookcollective.vb@gmail.com. Send mail to:

VB Education
271 Cadman Plaza E., STE 1
P.O. Box 24981
Brooklyn, NY 11201

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSIONS: July 26, 2018

*Please note that not all submissions will be selected, and, for the protection of VB, the Book Collective reserves the right to edit submissions

In Solidarity,
The VB
visit our new website: https://vb4cuba.com/
follow us on twitter @VB4Cuba

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