Yoani Sanchez – Generation Y

Written by:
Franklin Marquez – Miami, Florida – July 10, 2011

[Franklin Marquez – Age –50’s; Birthplace – Santiago de Cuba, Cuba; Residence – Miami, Florida, U.S.; Lives with Wife and Children; Occupation – Attorney, Writer, Moderator of the Blog]

One person we do not have as a contributor to our blog is Yoani Sanchez. However, whether she knows it or not, she is a tremendous influence on this compilation.  She is the most amazing person.  Inside a country where she has been beaten by authorities, where her home is watched around the clock, where talking negative about the government is dangerous, she keeps on publishing her live blog from her home in Havana.

This is how she explains where the name of the blog was derived:  “Generation Y is a Blog inspired by people like me, with names that start with or contain a "Y". Born in Cuba in the '70s and '80s, marked by schools in the countryside, Russian cartoons, illegal emigration and frustration. So I invite, especially, Yanisleidi, Yoandri, Yusimí, Yuniesky and others who carry their "Y's" to read me and to write to me.”

She has recently published books, including a book of past blogs, and non-fiction works. She has won awards. She has written that she could not travel to the presentation of her book overseas, because she cannot leave her country.  She’s been awarded the 2011 International Women of Courage Award.  She’s been mentioned in numerous publications and has been lauded by Time Magazine, among others.

If you are interested in Cuba, and have not read what she writes and publishes, you must do so.  The English version of the blog here.

Her book, HAVANA REAL - One Woman Fights to Tell the Truth About Cuba Today can be purchased through the publisher’s site here.

Currently on that site is her acceptance speech for the International Women of Courage award, in which she explains what she does, and why. It’s very inspirational.

She’s a participant, via video in How to Ignite, or Quash, a Revolution in 140 Characters or Less on July 13.  The talk is put on by New America Foundation in Washington, DC on Wednesday, July 13, 2011 from 2:00pm to 6:00pm. Yoani will be on at 4:30, and her English translator, Mary Jo Porter is on a panel at 4:45. The talk is about social media, including Twitter and its effects in Tunisia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Cuba.  It’s unlikely that many in Cuba have technology and Internet access to be able to utilize Twitter and similar social media easily and often, so it seems doubtful that an on-the-spot revolution would work well.  But that’s exactly what Yoani and her followers are doing, slowly.

Follow along and join the conversation on Twitter: Use Hashtag - #140rev

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