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Havana Then and Now (Then & Now (Thunder Bay Press)) Hardcover – 21 Oct 2004

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Advantage Publishers Group (21 Oct. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592232078
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592232079
  • Product Dimensions: 28.9 x 24.7 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 412,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Llilian Llanes is a former History of Art professor at the University of Havana. She is also the founding director of Cuba's principal art museum, the Center Wilfredo Lam, and has written two books on Cuban history.

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Built in the sixteenth century, the Castillo de los Tres Reyes del Morro rises strategically over the mouth of Havana Bay. Read the first page
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By the_scream_uk on 25 Jan. 2012
Format: Hardcover
I can't praise this book highly enough!

As you flick through the pages you are presented with an image on the left page dating back to (in some cases) the late 1800's / early 1900's, while the page on the right shows a photo - taken from very close to the same viewpoint - taken from the 2000's. A familiarity of Havana is required to get the most out of the book but it's great for anyone with an interest in the history of the city.

For once, we have a book here which doesn't heap praise on the pre-revolution government of Cuba and wholeheartedly criticize Fidel Castro. What we have is a "then and now" view of a city enabling you to see what has and hasn't changeg over 100 years or so. It's surprising in some cases what little has changed.

Having now visited Havana twice (and hopefully many more visits to come) i am familiar enough with many of the photographed sites to recognise where in the city they were taken. I am rather pleased with the fact that, despite only receiving this as a gift after my last visit to Havana, i have taken some photographs of some of the featured sites myself. In some cases this allows a "then and now" from the recent images in the book to my own trip.

Excellently produced and including some fine historical knowledge, this is a must for anyone interested in Havana in any way - historical or photographical.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By marcoscu TOP 500 REVIEWER on 20 Mar. 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I was lucky enough to live and work in Havana between 1993 and 2000 and so am very familiar with many of the places featured in this remarkable book. Having a particular interest in the history of the city confirmed this for me as a must have purchase.

The book is a large format hard backed volume of just over 140 pages. Throughout it follows the then and now format - a 1920's to 1950's picture on the left with a modern day photograph from the same camera position on the facing page. The picture quality is excellent and well reproduced on semi matt paper. To accompany each pair of pictures are a few short paragraphs of copy explaining the location and history of the images.

I would think to get the most from this book you would need to be familiar with Havana and to have an interest in the history of the city. Good though the photos are they are no so good that they can stand alone and out of context. I would question of what interest they woulkd be to the casual reader. Equally, the text, although illuminating to the pictures, does not go deep enough into the history of the city to again stand alone. But then that would not be within the scope of the book.

For me this was a great buy made even more enjoyable by the sight of my own house featured on the cover!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 13 reviews
17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Communist Propaganda in Disguise 2 Aug. 2009
By Andrew J. Rodriguez - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I agree one hundred percent with MamboCha's review. This book is another example of communist propaganda finesse.
The Cuba then, wasn't the Cuba I left in 1961, and the Cuba now does not portray the destruction and misery the Castro brothers and their puppety government have inflicted in what used to be the most prosperous, educated, and beautiful country in the Caribbean.
My advise to the reader: Please be very careful when choosing books about Cuba, especially those dealing with the history of that country. Shame, shame, shame.

Andrew J. Rodriguez
Award-winning author: "Adios, Havana," a Memoir

PS: To view pictures of the Cuba that was, I recommend the book "Havana Before Castro"
by Peter Moruzzi.
61 of 81 people found the following review helpful
It does not show anything 12 Dec. 2005
By MamboCha. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I have a small booklet called "Remembering the Cuba we left" with color pictures of Cuba during the 1950s, it is old and I suppose long out of print, it does not contain that many pictures, but the pictures of Havana and the rest of the country are really good. Some were shot from the sky; others captured the life and people walking through the city, buildings, nightclubs, parks, monuments, countryside, etc. I have searched for more of these same pictures and others like them and have not been able to find them. They truly capture what Cuba was before the revolution. No other, not only Caribbean nation, but many Latin American nations didn't even come close. It was the 3rd best economy in the American continent after the U.S and Canada, and followed closely by Argentina. By 1958 Cuba was the most immigrated Latin American country, with the largest European emigration, and more Americans living in Cuba than Cubans in the U.S. Havana even had a China Town.

This book is bad and I will tell you why, I have knowledge of the subject, and I am not stupid. The idea of these series of books is a "Then and Now" of cities, but when it came to do Havana they had a problem. (Says on the back of the book) They went straight to a present day government controlled Havana library in search of info and pictures of the past, that's the problem. Pictures of a prosperous 1950s Havana with commerce, billboards, and the largest middle class in Latin America walking the streets, they probably burned them a long time ago, or Castro has them in his closet. The past of Cuba is something the present communist system is not too interested in showing. There is no free press; all books, newspapers, and media are controlled by the mafia like communists, everything is a manipulation and lie that everyone has to repeat or else you get kicked in jail (the least).

In this book all the pictures of the past are in black & white, and if this was not enough, about 98% of all the pictures of the past are from the mid 1800s to the 1920s, how clever are they. There is only one picture of 1958, about some Ferraris in the Havana Gran Prix, that's it. This way people don't see the pre-Castro days, and the modern day imposed poverty, decay, and ruins won't stand out as much. It will go against the millions Castro spends in promoting his "progressive" slavish system. It has worked in a way, every day I see more morons with Che Guevara shirts but none of them go to live in Cuba or any other communist country, after all. That's where all the bla bla bla is cut short. Anyhow, this is the story here, this book has no photographic value, it will not show you the height of the beauty it ones was, it will not transport you anywhere, nor make a true comparison. You can find better pictures on a web search than on this book, truly. There have been other Havana picture books that although photographed in the present still give you a better idea of what it once was. Robert Polidori: Havana could be one of them, who knows?
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Havana Then and Now. 24 July 2011
By Jose Lopez - Published on
Notice They Got Lillian Llanes a State worker(Los Gusanos Verdaero se quedado en Cuba)to compile this book,which is a shame seeing as Miami Then and Now is a Good Book,they could have done a better job with Havana then and now,you will notice even for a Picture Book the Propaganda was somehow slipped in! Things like "Inequality" and other Comrade Keywords that appeal to the elite few running the asylum while the groupies both on the island and off serve them,Pre-1959 Cuba Bad,Post-1959 Cuba good with Executions/Firing Squad and No Freedom,Interesting rosy picture for the useful few.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Poor 19 May 2013
By Mario Hernandez - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Only a feww fhotos . There is much more material and of best quaility all arround. Good presentation, but ppor contein
Take a quick visit to Havana by checking out this book 22 Nov. 2013
By LAS - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love the before and after photos of the same scenes. And Havana was interesting because I have never been there. The historical photograph collection is great.
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