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Yenisel Rodriguez Perez: I have lived in Cuba my entire life, except for several months in 2013 when I was in Miami with my father. Despite the 90 miles that separate Havana and Miami, I find profound reasons in both for political and community activism. My encounter with socio-cultural anthropology eight years ago prepared me for a commitment of love for cultural diversity.

Political Indoctrination for Cuba’s Children

January 29, 2013 | Print Print |

Yenisel Rodriguez Perez

HAVANA TIMES — Para saber mañana” (To Know Tomorrow) is the leading program in the government media campaign seeking to indoctrinate the younger generation of Cubans with the time-worn and fraudulent ideology of the “Cuban Revolution.”

With children’s programs like this, they daily violate the rights of children in our country.

This is something extremely serious, even more so when the Cuban government is called before the Convention of the Rights of the Child to certify programs appropriate for these youth.

Although defining what’s appropriate for children is a controversial issue, there’s no doubt that the exacerbated and de-contextualized ideologicalization and politicization of children’s imagery is a serious violation of the processes of education and instruction at that stage of life.

What role, then, does the UNICEF office in Cuba play by not commenting on this fact?

We know that the Convention of the Rights of the Child doesn’t require compliance by those governments, such as Cuba’s, that have signed and ratified its declarations.

That’s why it’s important to be aware of the reports that the Cuban government presents each year to the United Nations committee that’s devoted to the issue.

This allows one to be aware of the examples used to empirically support that manipulated optimism that each year effectively defines the civic culture of Cuban children.

How does Para saber mañana fit in with the political needs of children?

What type of popular referendum or psycho-educational diagnosis can the directors of the program base themselves on to justify the “utilization” of such concepts as “Liberty or death,” “Study, Work and Arms for National Defense” or “Imperialism”?

The script for Para saber mañana is sadly predictable. On top of an incoherent and improvised aesthetic is poured a torrent of political slogans, historical dates and party directives that leave the youngsters stunned.

The scriptwriters don’t use much educational design skill to adapt the contents of their ideological tracts to the intellectual capabilities of their viewers and readers.

The children receive a dose of political indoctrination in a brutal and unlimited manner.

 


What's your opinion?

  • Moses Patterson

    Whatever political indoctrination goals that ‘Para Saber Manana’ hopes to achieve in Cuba’s children are more than undone when they become teen-agers by the regaeton they will come to listen to. Cuba’s youth today know bullshit when they see it. No worries.

  • Walter Teague

    Yenisel Rodriguez Perez
    I may not understand your specific objections to the political education of children in Cuba because of translation, or space, or cultural problems, but please explain what you mean when you say “Although defining what’s appropriate for children is a controversial issue, there’s no doubt that the exacerbated and de-contextualized ideologicalization and politicization of children’s imagery is a serious
    violation of the processes of education and instruction at that stage of life.”

    Without detail and/or explanation, these sentences are just political babble. You also include “imperialism” as a term you claim is unjustified. Are you suggesting that the teachers use the term, but don’t explain, or justify it with historic fact, or are you saying one should not use this term with children? Maybe you think it is “political indoctrination” to use this term with children.

    Frankly Mr. Perez, as an advocate and “member of the Haydee Santamaria Collective and the Critical Observatory” you come off as a right-wing, anti-communist of the old, reactionary type. If I am wrong about any of this, please clarify. After-all, you are writing to adults, not children.

    • Mark G

      The words “a right-wing, anti-communist of the old reactionary type” is a good example of empty sloganeering bordering on character assassination. It would be most more constructive to debate the contents of the blog post rather than making baseless assumptions about the author.

      • Luis

        “If I am wrong about any of this, please clarify.”

        I think it says it all if one wants to know in details the context terms such as ‘imperialism’ are applied. For example, when I did explain in more details one episode of ‘Castelo Rá-tim-bum’ and why it’s pure gold.

  • Luis

    Instead of importing the lowest-common denominator of Brazilian crap – the Globo soap-operas – why does Cuban TV not import the internationally acclaimed children’s shows like ‘Rá-tim-bum’ and Cao Hamburger’s ‘Castelo Rá-tim-bum’, from the epoch when TV Cultura was still a public network?

    For instance, the episode on the ‘blue girl’ is tear-dropping. Treats the issue of racism in a beautiful manner. In short, suddenly a blue girl appears out of nowhere. Nobody wants to interact with her, let alone play with her, just because she’s blue. Of course, at the end everybody swallows their pride and everything ends nice and all.