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Fidel Castro (Revised)


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About the Author

Robert Quirk, formerly professor of history at Indiana University, lives in Bloomington, Indiana.


One comes away from this major biography with an image of the Cuban dictator as a man who is a leader but not a thinker or innovator. Emphasizing Castro's often wrongheaded impulsiveness, Quirk ( The Mexican Revolution and the Catholic Church ) chronicles how his foreign and domestic crash programs have done Cuba more harm than good. Quirk's richly detailed, psychologically acute portrait reveals more about Castro's unique personality and character than do previous biographies. A thorough examination of the leader's homophobia and difficulties with women, for instance, reveals a life spent being looked after by females without being able to form a lasting sexual relationship with any of them--including the 20-year association with protective lioness Celia Sanchez, which the author likens to that between a son and doting mother. Quirk's concluding assessment of the Maximum Leader is harsh: Castro, he argues, has become a caricature of his earlier self. History, far from absolving him, has simply passed him by. Photos not seen by PW . (Sept.)

"A broad and often devastating indictment of its subject and his historical role... An encyclopedic study of [Castro's] rise to power." -- Mark A. Uhlig - New York Times Book Review "Quirk's combination of detailed historical interpretation and psychological analysis make his the definitive study." -- Library Journal

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