Stories written by Dalia Acosta
Dalia Acosta joined IPS in 1990 as a contributor and has been the IPS Correspondent in Havana since 1995. Dalia received her degree in international journalism from the State Institute of International Relations in Moscow in 1987. She worked for the Cuban newspapers Granma and Juventud Rebelde, where she specialised in investigative journalism related to women, minorities, AIDS and sexual rights. In 1991, she began working for the Servicio de Noticias de la Mujer (SEM). In 1990, she received the Tina Modotti Journalism Award and two years later she won the National Journalism Award for an article on the rock music community in Cuba. Currently she alternates her IPS work with an academic investigation of homosexuality in Cuba. | Web

CUBA: Ten Years Fighting HIV/AIDS and Reaching Out to Gays

Raúl Regueiro remembers every detail about the creation, 10 years ago in Cuba, of the project for the prevention of HIV/AIDS among men who have sex with men, and the way the initiative crossed the boundaries of purely health-related concerns to address the question of social inclusion.

Cuba Maps Its Rock Music History

Cuban rock 'n' roll, once an underground movement, is being mapped for inclusion in an exhaustive compendium of Latin American rock -- from the music itself to its transformation into a lifestyle.

Diverse identities Credit: Public domain

CUBA: Men’s Group Champions “Diverse Masculinities”

Men representing an array of sexual identifications have organised in Cuba to defend sexual rights and promote respect for "other masculinities," with the belief that greater visibility is needed to achieve true social change and acceptance.

Mavi Susel Credit: Jorge Luis Baños/IPS

FILM-CUBA: “I Fought for This, But Not Just to Be a Housewife”

Mavi Susel, the first transsexual in Cuba to undergo sex reassignment surgery, back in 1988, has found herself trapped in the traditionally assigned gender role of a housewife.

Marcela Lagarde Credit: Dalia Acosta/IPS

Q&A: “Feminism Doesn’t Bite”

After more than a century of existence, feminism is still around in Latin America and the world, but the history of this ideology that seeks equality for women is like a succession of breaking waves, with peaks and troughs.

"Blind Mouth Singing" opens door to Cuba-U.S. theatre cooperation  Credit: Jorge Luis Baños/IPS

CUBA-US: Milestone Theatre Production Breaches Cultural Blockade

"When time starts to change, no one can stop it," says a character in "El canto del pozo ciego" (Blind Mouth Singing), a play that is reviving the cultural exchange between Cuba and the United States, which has been virtually nonexistent over the past 10 years.

EDUCATION: EnGendering Awareness in Trainee Teachers

The teacher seats the most attentive girls in the front row and the troublesome boys at the back of the classroom. He punishes the liveliest pupil and lets the withdrawn one be. Dark-skinned boys sit with dark-skinned girls, boys play with boys and girls with girls.

LITERATURE-CUBA: ‘Forbidden Stories’ by Sonia Rivera-Valdes

Lázara wakes up every morning in her home in New York, has a cup of coffee and, with the same passion with which she takes a stand for or against every cause, she turns on the radio, hoping to hear the news that she has been waiting for most of her life: the demise of former Cuban president Fidel Castro.

Virtual Diversity in Cuban Blogosphere

There are blogs made in Cuba, and many more Cubans living abroad who blog, both in favour of or against the Cuban government. Caught up in the sea of political passions, the hundreds of blogs about this socialist island nation reflect a growing variety of viewpoints and realities.

Manuel Cuesta Morúa Credit: Dalia Acosta/IPS

Q&A: Church’s Mediation Marks Start of “New Time” for Cuba

One of Cuba's most prominent moderate dissidents, historian Manuel Cuesta Morúa, says the recent talks between Catholic Church leaders and the government of Raúl Castro mark the start of a "new time" for the country.

CUBA: Struggle Against Homophobia Takes to the Streets

"Governments cannot wait for a social consensus in order to guarantee respect for people's rights," Mariela Castro, head of Cuba's National Centre for Sex Education (CENESEX), told IPS on the occasion of the International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia in Cuba Monday.

CUBA: Keeping the Festival Magic Alive

As the cinema lights switched off, the groups of painters, impromptu filmmakers and craftspeople who filled the parks and plazas of this eastern Cuban town over the past week began to drift away. The musicians who played every night till dawn are gone, and so are the vendors of prawn cocktails, crabmeat pies and roast suckling pig.

CUBA: Children Reach Out Through the Screen to Peers in Post-Quake Haiti

Five girls and five boys are taking time to remember the hurricane that devastated their home town of Gibara in eastern Cuba two years ago, mingling their memories with their dreams, and filming images to make a video message for children in Haiti.

CUBA: Skilful Surfing by Digital Culture Project

Buoyant in the storm and sailing for new horizons, the Cuban cultural project Esquife (Skiff) has spent over a decade navigating the rough waters of thought-provoking digital journalism, stirring up opinions rather than wallowing in complacency.

Women from East Alamar workshop working together on a banner.  Credit: José Luis Baños /IPS

CUBA: Women Knitting for Change

A neighbour started calling Andrea del Sol "Perseverance," and the name stuck. Since 1998, she and a small group of women from Alamar, on the outskirts of the Cuban capital, have been throwing their combined energies behind a common purpose: "changing things."

CUBA: Wendy – Reconciling the Inner and Outer Image

It was as if she had only closed her eyes for a moment. When Wendy Iriepa came round after surgery over a year ago, she tried to get up as if nothing had happened, but a nurse gently pushed her back into bed. "All done?" she asked, and the nurse replied, "Yes."

Humberto Martínez – victim of stereotypes of masculinity.  Credit: Courtesy of Humberto Mayol/Proyecto Palomas

CUBA: There Are No Tough Guys; It’s Tough To Be a Guy

It has been three years since he separated from his second wife and realised he did not have a home to return to. Although he has always been able to count on a helping hand from one friend or another, and his children help him out now and then, Humberto Martínez spends most nights sleeping on a park bench in the Cuban capital.

CUBA: Peace Concert Bridges Borders and Differences

Although it was the target of threats from radical Cuban exiles and the focus of controversy and opinion polls from the moment it was announced, Colombian musician Juanes' idea of staging his "Peace without Borders" concert in Cuba proved a success at promoting understanding, in spite of differences.

Q&A: "Blogmailing" to Foment Debate on Cuban Filmmaking

Blogging has taught him to share his deepest concerns with people who think differently, to treat others and himself more compassionately, to learn from even the most impassioned disputes, and above all, to show that far from being the sole possessor of truth, he is desperately seeking it.

University student during the week, craft goods vendor on the weekend. Credit: Jorge Luis Baños/IPS

CUBA: Will Legalising Multiple Jobs Bring Real Change for Women?

With a good job as a professional in Cuba’s public sector, Mariela Sánchez takes advantage of the flexible hours to take on another, part-time job and collaborate with a specialised publication.

CUBA: Leaving the Hurricane Behind

Debris of houses, roofless buildings and fallen trees are still routine sights along the 740-km drive from the Cuban capital to Holguín, one of the regions most heavily affected by Hurricane Ike in early September, 2008.

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