Lorraine Bayard de Volo's Women and the Cuban Insurrection: How Gender Shaped Castro's Victory is a welcome new addition to studies of women and gender in revolutionary Cuba. Drawing on prodigious research, especially in Cuban periodicals, this clearly conceptualized, persuasively argued, and accessibly written book unequivocally demonstrates the importance of women and gender in the Cuban insurrection against Fulgencio Batista. In addition, Bayard de Volo makes substantial contributions in explaining the dynamics of the insurrection and its surprising victory. The book thus joins recent scholarship that seeks to reassess the anti-Batista movement by recovering the participation of overlooked actors such as women and organized labor and by asking how the rebel army, the urban underground, and public forms of protest interacted with one another.

Indeed, these questions—the role of women and gender, and the triumph of the insurrection—are intimately related here, as...

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