This coming Thursday, Casa de las Américas will launch the 255th issue of its influential journal Casa de las Américas, a special volume that pays homage both to Haydée Santamaría (one of its founders and a heroine of the Moncada attack) and to the institution itself, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The preface for the special volume reads: “Casa de las Américas is celebrating five decades side by side with the heroic emancipating process of our people. Number 255 of the journal that carries its name and its spirit as an indefatigable cultural force, and which embodies the inspiration for the creation of an America of ours that was Martí’s legacy, wants to honor this celebration. We hope that the friends who have joined us throughout these years with a faith for which we are grateful, will honor us with their presence at the launching of the issue of Casa las Américas dedicated to the 50th anniversary of our institution.” The volume includes pieces by the recently deceased Mario Benedetti, by its director, the poet and essayist Roberto Fernández Retamar, and by Rubem Fonseca, Nélida Piñón, Óscar Collazos, Hildebrando Pérez Grande, Ernest Pépin, Chiqui Vicioso, Juan Bañuelos, Luisa Valenzuela, Thiago de Mello, Gustavo Pereira, Ana Lydia Vega, Ernesto Cardenal, Margaret Randall, Ricardo Piglia, Juan Manuel Roca, Keith Ellis, Julio Rodríguez Puértolas, Iris M. Zavala, Enrique Saínz, Hiram Hernández Castro, Sandra Valmaña, Basilia Papastamatiú, Deny Extremera, Jesús Guanche and Juan Mesa Díaz.
The pages of the volume are illustrated by images from the institutions Photographic Archive, a collection that has gathered a visual record of half a century of the institutions relationship with Cuban and international artists and intellectuals, and with the hundreds of researchers who have joined the integrationist project of Casa de las Américas.