Cuba's Development

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  • Nationalised property also included the extensive land holdings of the Roman Catholic Church.  This resulted in the expulsion of the Cuban bishop and hundreds of the clergy
    • Cuba's Development
      • Between 1971-71, productivity increased by 20%.  The efforts to systemise economic production combined with the merit system resulted in a significant rise in the GDP from 3.9% to 10% annually
        • Subsidies from the Soviet Union played a large role in funding many of these ventures
        • Thousands of new doctors (mostly female) and medical professionals were trained.  Hospitals were opened in the countryside.  Infant mortality decreased significantly 
      • Folk artists became popular and were influenced by international protest movements in the 1960s
        • Artists praised the revolution and its advances but criticised its failures, authoritarianism and the restriction of artistic freedom
      • In 1960, the Cuban Women’s Federation or FMC was started under Vilma Espin 
        • It started by attacking attitudes and illiteracy and created support for a national healthcare system where women might find employment
          • In 1975 the egalitarian Family Code was enacted and made sexual equality in marriage a legal and moral obligation
            • The code mandated an equal sharing of house chores and child raising and legitimised divorce
              • Women started attending universities in growing numbers (by 1990 57% of university students were women. The number of women in school and the workplace tripled between 1959-1990
        • During the 1970s, Cuba guaranteed the entitlement of all citizens regardless of gender and ethnicity to equal wages, education, healthcare and merit hiring
      • Schools in the countryside were considered inadequate so Castro mobilised 100,000 students to teach in rural areas
        • They taught a million people to read and write and this gave Cuba one of the highest literacy rates in Latin America
    • One in two Cubans worked in the sugar industry which meant for half the year they were unemployed.  Now Castro guaranteed them an adequate yearly wage


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