LatinaLista — Miami is famous for many things — its nightlife, South Beach, Art Basel, being the Cruise Capital of the World, the Miami Dolphins, the South Beach Wine & Food Festival, its beaches…the list goes on. Yet, even a casual visit to Miami immediately reveals why the most populous metropolis in the Southeastern United States is known as the “Capital of Latin America” — its Cuban American residents.
Between 1959-2009, over one million Cubans settled in Miami. It ranks second, after El Paso, Texas, with a Spanish-speaking majority. Little Havana is one of the most popular stops for many tourists who want to see the heart of Miami. To say that Cuban Americans have had a hand in shaping the city is an understatement.
One filmmaker, wanting to chronicle the Cuban impact on Miami, created a 96-minute documentary entitled “The Republic of Miami: Miami as the Cuban American experience””
Rwanda-born Adelin Gasana was fascinated by the complex life experience of Cuban Americans and interviewed dozens of Cuban Americans throughout the greater Miami region to get their perspectives on how Cuban Americans “Latinized” an American city.
The full-length film is available online.