Fidel Castro's daughter to speak at Penn State Worthington Scranton

Alina Fernandez, the daughter of Fidel Castro, will share her first-person, intimate account of growing up in Cuba, during an appearance at Penn State Worthington Scranton at 7 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 20, in the campus' Multi-Purpose Building. This event is free and open to the public. Anyone interested in hearing Fernandez on Sept. 20 should RSVP to the Student Activities office at 570-963-2700.

Having grown up in a convulsive Cuba, she lived with the ongoing threat of invasion by American troops and is a witness with a unique vision, not only of her father, and how the country changed after The Revolution, but of Cuba's future, and the potential for reform and a better life in Cuba.

Fernandez will share with the audience her insight as one of the Cuban elite. Listeners will learn of her life in Cuba and hear her first-hand accounts of the surrounding political environment during the 1960s and '70s.  Employing her unique sense of style and humor, she reveals exciting and suspenseful anecdotes, snapshots of Cuban society, her inside scoop on Cuban politics, and a detailed view of her father.

As one of Castro's children, she says she had a strangely mixed upbringing -- a combination of privilege and privation. She will share her private story, told from an intensely personal point of view. She will speak for herself and the people of Cuba, whom she knew over the last 40 years, rather than as an expert on Castro as the political ruler of Cuba.

Just a toddler when Castro overthrew the Batista government during the 1959 Cuban Revolution, she saw Castro on the television screen and then in her living room, as he would frequently visit her at night. She played tirelessly with him until dawn, then he would disappear for months at a time.

Fernandez became rebellious and in the 1980's became part of the political dissident movement on the island. By 1993 she was forced to flee Cuba; today, she resides in the United States.

In 1998 St. Martin's Press published her story, "Castro's Daughter: An Exile's Memoir of Cuba."

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Amy Gruzesky

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Last Updated January 09, 2015