POlC91 - RevolutionaryAlternatives: Cuba and Nicaragua
I) Revolution Defined:
Features of the Polity Model (Tily)
1) gradual mobilization of would-be challenges
2_ rapid increase in number of supporters
3_ government becomes unable to suppress challengers
4) establishment of control over part of government apparatus by challengers
5) struggle to maintain or expand control by challengers
6) Victory or defeat of challengers.
7) reimposition of governmental control depending on who emerges victorious.
Structural Model of Revolution (Theda Skocpol)
-Revolution the result of the weakening and collapse of state structure, as a result of int'l
and domestic pressures.
-Different crises could affect state (lack of autonomy from elite class, strong egalitarian
tendencies, outside military threat).
-State crises result in revolution
-extreme pressure on the state is required.
-small plot holding peasants tend to be the revolutionaries.
-specific agrarian structure is required.
-state's repressive capacity must break down.
4) Foran's Model of Third World Revolution
-Based on Mexico, China, Cuba, Iran, Nicaragua
-Focus on Second Generation Revolutions
Dependent Development + Repressive Personalist State + Culture of Resistance +
Economic Crisis + Favourable International Conditions.
Key variable: Repressive Personalist State
-Critique: laundry list of conditions, majority of which are prevalent in most L.Amer Nations.
Second Gen Revolutions: revolutions carried out in the global south in the post-WWII
Differences from 1st gen rev's
-Economic dependency is major factor. (May make it harder to transform society)
-Neo-colonial societies (gone through period of colonization)
-Int'l vulnerability (esp from United States)
II Insurrection and Political Victory:
1898: US Declares War on Spain and takes possession of Cuba. (Spanish-American War)
-dominated US economy in early 1900s (influx of US corporations).
1940s/1950s - Corrupt dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista - held power for two dictators
-Subservient to US interests.
1953: Rebels, led by Fidel Castro, launch failed attack on army barracks.
-Half were killed or arrested.
-Castro brothers jailed for 15 yrs.
1955: Batista declared amnesty for rebels; Castro leaves for Mexico.
1956: Castro returns to Cuba with a group of 82 to launch an armed struggle.
-most were captured or killed.
-Castro and a small band flee to the Sierra Maestra Mountains. - Developed a
revolutionary movement 800 strong.
-Guerrilla warfare tactics.
1959: Batista regime severely repressed civilians, leading to withdrawal of corporate and
Jan 1st - Batista flees Cuba, Castro enters Havana as a liberator.