The Bay of Pigs: Revisiting Two Museums

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Peter Read
Marivic Wyndham


The Museum of Playa Giron (the Bay of Pigs) in the region of Cienega De Zapata, Cuba, celebrates the repulse of Brigade 2506 as the first reverse of US imperialism on the American continents. The equivalent Brigade 2506 Museum in Miami, dedicated to and maintained by the members of Brigade 2506, celebrates defeat at the Bay of Pigs as moral victory for the Cuban exiles. The forces were indeed implacable foes.

Yet between the museums can be detected some curious similarities. Both present the common theme of the confrontation between forces of good and evil. Both celebrate the philosophy that dying for one’s country is the greatest good a citizen may achieve. Both museums fly the common Cuban flag. Both museums identify a common enemy: the United States of America.

This article, by comparing the displays in the two museums, analyses some cultural elements of what, despite decades of separation, in some ways remains a common Cuban culture.

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Author Biographies

Peter Read

Professor Peter Read is a Visiting Professorial Fellow in the Department of History, University of Sydney.

Marivic Wyndham, Institute for International Studies, University of Technology, Sydney

Dr Marivic Wyndham is Coordinator Spanish Language and Culture Program and Head, Latin American Studies (Acting) in the Institute for International Studies, University of Technology, Sydney.