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Cuba: Blogger and Scholar Ted Henken on New Media in Cuba

, by Global Voices

The first post in this two-post series featured highlights from a discussion between bloggers in Cuba, the United States (US), and Spain focusing on the use of new media in Cuba, where Internet access and technological tools are extremely scarce.

For this post, I interviewed City University of New York (CUNY) Professor of Sociology, Ted Henken, a Cuba expert who is the author of El Yuma, a blog that explores social currents in contemporary Cuba and closely follows the Cuban blogosphere.

I discussed with Henken his recent appearance on Radio Martí where he helped facilitate a dialogue between several of the most prominent Cuban bloggers writing today and his students at Baruch College in New York City. This was a unique event for Radio Martí. Funding and oversight of the station come from the Broadcasting Board of Governors, a US federal agency devoted to broadcasting radio and television into countries where media outlets independent of the state are either scarce or heavily censored.
Ted Henken (on the right) with blogger Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo. Posted with permission of photographer.

Ted Henken (on the right) with blogger Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo. Posted with permission of photographer.

Much of Radio Martí programming is explicitly anti-Castro and supportive of US policy towards Cuba; the station is seen by many as a symbol of the political gridlock that has defined US-Cuba policy for decades. Henken shared his perspective on the political nature of Radio Martí:

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