humans of havana

Humans of Havana Website Profiles Cubans’ Lives Beyond The Old Havana Scene

In recent years, tourism has changed Old Havana more than the last fifty years of majestic decay.

The old city has experienced a lot of much needed renovation, but there has also been a quiet dissolving of traditional daily life that existed in the city just a few years ago. You can still find Cubans active in daily life in cities like Santa Clara, but before you go to Old Havana, check out the Humans of Havana website as a reference point for what you will want to find in Old Havana.

RELATED: Discover Old Havana in this Legal Tour is a photoblog about Cuban people with the same aspirations as the hugely popular (HONY).

Everyone has a story. And in Cuba’s case, a whole country has a story to tell that is like no other. The coming years will reveal a lot of visuals and narratives awaiting connection with a broader audience. The creators of the photoblog (the Cuba Journal) wanted an alternative to the endless stream of antique American cars and instead want to chronicle the “change generation” in Cuba that is unbound by age. The site is not political. It’s simply about Cuban people.

The format follows HONY almost exactly. Candid images combined with short text narratives to add a little bit of context. Subjects reveal a little about themselves, which reveals a little about the city – and perhaps, collectively, a little about our common humanity.

What can you find on Humans of Havana? We’re trying to capture the narrative of the Cuban people as they transition from a closed society to an open one. Our Cuban photographer has been given minimal instruction beyond capturing a true sense of what ordinary Cubans are doing and saying on the street. Hopefully, the collection of images and stories will allow site visitors to step into the shoes of a typical Cuban and catch a glimpse of an experience that may be different from their own and also learn something about how connected we are despite our differences.

Cuban roasted pork recipe
This is the real way we Cubans celebrate the end of the year: the entire family get together at home and we roast a pork in the backyard, like this. “We enjoy the process of roasting of the pork very much. Meanwhile, we drink a lot, we talk, we make jokes, kids play around… It’s the tradition.”

Humans of Havana
“I feel very grateful to this machine. All these years I’ve earned the money I need to live thanks to it. I guess I should also give thanks to my father, who taught me how to work with this.”

Humans of Havana
“I studied painting when I was younger, and that’s what I do. I’m an artist. But the fun part goes away when you have to sell your paintings for a living, and more, when you don’t have the possibility to travel and look for a good gallery that gives the value your work deserves, and in consequence, you have to sell your paintings for less than what they really cost. You have to do it for your own survival. That’s why sometimes I get sick of it. But what else can I do? I have to go back and keep on working. It’s hard to make a living from painting. Everybody knows that.”

Humans of Havana

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Humans of Havana Website Profiles Cubans’ Lives Beyond The Old Havana Scene was last modified: July 15th, 2017 by Simons Chase