La botella al mar de Marķa Elena (The Message in a Bottle from Marķa Elena)

Video by Coco Fusco | Color | 44 min | 2015

A video about the case of Cuban poet Marķa Elena Cruz Varela, winner of the 1989 National Poetry Prize. In 1991, she spearheaded an effort by ten Cuban intellectuals to issue a public declaration calling for political reforms. The Declaration of the Cuban Intellectuals alluded to the critical situation that Cuba faced with the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the fall of Communism in Eastern Europe and the dramatic drop in imports and trade. Cruz Varela and several other dissidents were sieged by mobs and arrested for their efforts. In the video, Fusco contrasts the poet's recollections of the events with those a Communist party militant who was involved in the mob attacks.