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Word Count: 739
Cubans are Hispanics of course and 40 years of socialism have not completely erased the traditional Hispanic values that Cubans have always held In fact there is evidence that the Cuban brand of socialism has been tailored somewhat to complement or at least not to confront directly the traditional values Cuban Hispanics however has always been tempered by influences from its Black community and many of these influences have been given pride of place by the socialist government in fulfillment of its aim to equalize the citizenry of Cuba In short Cubans cant and should not be thought of as another group of undifferentiated Hispanics There are differences within any national Hispanic group and significant differences between any two Hispanic groups and Cubans by virtue of their history and the social system they have lived in are significantly different from all Cuban values stress collective wealth and collective political awareness People who have lived in the Cuban social system may be struck negatively by the materialism winner-take-all capitalism individualism competition crime and racism of the United States It may be difficult for them to see positive aspects of American culture Their negative view may be amplified by their economic situation They may be living in poor areas going to poorer schools and at the same time being bombarded by advertising and an unbelievable array of consumer goods Cuba is traditionally a Catholic country but its Catholicism is much modified and influenced A much stronger religious force is Santeria Santeria developed out of the traditions of the Yoruba one of the African peoples who were imported to Cuba during the 16th through 19th centuries to work on the sugar plantations Santeria blends elements of Christianity and West African beliefs and as such made it possible for the slaves to retain their traditional beliefs while appearing to practice Catholicism Santerias believe in one God but also in saints or spirits known as orishas
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