No productivist model of socialism has every existed in Cuba. Rather, the Cuban approach has drawn on a hybrid of ethical principles with some consistent strategic themes. Cuba’s socialist strategy has been reformulated quite flexibly, in relation to these principles and historical circumstances, and this flexibility seems to have been important in allowing Cuban socialism to adapt and survive. More recently, Cuba has looked for a selective engagement with the global economy, advancing its strong service sectors while protecting key domestic services and domestic food production. The major in-principle change in recent years has been the licensing of the hiring of private labor. Changes to Cuba’s microeconomy are also best understood through the lens of ethical socialism and adaptation. Special attention to Cuba’s microeconomy is warranted because of the complex relation between wages, subsidised prices, and shared services.
Latin American Perspectives, Issue 197, 41(4)