The Struggle for Cuba: Race and Empire in the 18th-century Atlantic World

Elena Schneider

Part of the Spring 2019 Bay Area Latin America Forum

February 19, 2019

Havana’s famed Castillo de los Tres Reyes del Morro has defended the city since the 16th century. (Photo by Emmanuel Huybrechts.)

Event Description

In 1762, British forces mobilized more than 230 ships and 26,000 soldiers, sailors, and enslaved Africans to attack Havana. They met fierce resistance for six suspenseful weeks. In the end, the British prevailed, but more lives were lost in the invasion and subsequent occupation of Havana than during the entire Seven Years’ War in North America. In this talk, Elena Schneider will discuss her recent book The Occupation of Havana: War, Trade, and Slavery in the Atlantic World, as well as the broader theme of the relationship between Anglo-American imperialism and racial struggle in Cuba.


Elena Schneider is Assistant Professor in the Department of History at UC Berkeley. She is a historian of Latin America and the Atlantic World, focusing on Cuba and the Caribbean, comparative colonialism and slavery, the Black Atlantic, and the ways that war, trade, and slavery integrated the Atlantic world across regional – and later national – boundaries.