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Download Fidel Castro: A Spoken Autobiography Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Fidel Castro: A Spoken Autobiography (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Fidel Castro
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (460 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Fidel Castro Narrator: Todd McLaren, Patrick Lawlor Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2008 ISBN:
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For decades, people have tried to persuade the leader of the Cuban Revolution to tell his own life story. Ignacio Ramonet, the celebrated editor in chief of Le Monde diplomatique, has finally succeeded. For the first time, in a series of extensive and probing interviews, Fidel Castro describes his life from the 1950s to the present day. In frank and compelling detail, he discusses his parents and his childhood, his earliest influences, the beginnings of the revolution, his relationship with Che Guevara, the drama of the Bay of Pigs and the Cuban Missile Crisis, the Jimmy Carter years, Cuban migration to the United States, his dealings with successive American presidents from Dwight D. Eisenhower to George W. Bush, and his relationship with such controversial leaders as Saddam Hussein and Hugo Chavez.

Along the way, Ramonet challenges Castro to discuss his views on a number of controversial questions, from human rights and freedom of the press to the repression of homosexuality and the survival of the death penalty in Cuba. This book will stand as the definitive record of an extraordinary life lived in turbulent times. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 KU | 2/20/2014

    " I had a hard time with the format of the book, ie question and answer, it was difficult for me to read. But, I did learn a lot about Fidel and the Cuban Revolution. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 John Panagiotopoulos | 2/19/2014

    " Revolutionary. Must read. Shows where principles and values can lead you. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Abul Kalam | 2/17/2014

    " I really wanted to like this book, but when it says his life, it meant to say the first chapter his childhood the rest of the book was about Cuban Polatics. This was the single most boring book i have ever read in my life, i havent read many but this was the most boring............ oh its also in question and answer form all the way through "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Eric Marxista | 2/11/2014

    " a++ would overthrow batista again "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Usman W. Chohan | 2/5/2014

    " nice to read about the face on the other side of the coin. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jww | 1/26/2014

    " Could use less of the author/interviewer's voice and more of Castro's (then again, Castro can be very long-winded and is, in his own word and his own eyes, never wrong). "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Marc Cooper | 1/21/2014

    " I am not a fan of Castro but it is interesting to try to understand contrasting figures in history. With this book being a sort of long interview autobiography one can learn something from how he speaks, answers, and leads conversation. One thing that strikes me, is that if you were a dictator only interested in holding on to all the power, it would be very convenient if the only two other modern leaders within your country who you happened to find worth much praising happened to be a dead man and your little brother. Coincidentally, Castro does not praise any other figures within his 'revolution,' at least not beyond a single mention in passing, who are not either the dead Che Guevara or the little brother Raul, no threats to possibly usurp any of the power he claims he is not motivated by. In general, Castro tries to sound extremely reasonable and moderate and thoughtful but it supposedly just so happens that careful thought has brought him to all the correct answers and that supposedly 99% of his people agree with him. He likes to correct the interviewer when he is wrong on a detail (why not just edit that out of the book) or congratulate the interviewer when he is correct on a detail, like a caring teacher, but the interviewer is a grown man so it strikes me as patronizing. There are some other interesting choices of words, like using the phrase "millions unanimously" to talk of how the people supposedly supported one of his initiatives, or trying to explain how someone might not count as a political prisoner if they are counter-revolutionary (you know the US had a revolution too awhile back, to which his ideas would be counter-revolutionary). He also claims that he doesn't arrest people for disagreeing with him, only people who "have broken laws," but that is an extremely superficial argument when you dont go on to defend the nature of those 'laws', after all a law can forbid anything or be be enforced in any way. He doesn't try to defend the one party state much until the end, and when he does the explanation is all too convenient about how everyone happens to exactly agree and its just such a warm friendly cheerful place free of all that unpleasant bickering. He says he is in favor of culture. He argues that his countries survival against US opposition is only possible through and therefore evidence of strong guiding principles, but North Korea could try that same argument, as could polio and consumption (they have only survived the super powers trying to eradicate them through their strong guiding principles of solidarity in resisting new counter-revolutionary vaccines and antibiotics). He does stick up for the death penalty, saying that its hard to rule it out when you dont know what sort of terrorism could be committed, and I like how it irritated the leftist French interviewer when he did that. Overall, it is interesting sometimes to read something you disagree with and get a sense of it, but this was not the most engaging book. To judge Castro, Cuba is not quite North Korea, Syria, etc. Its people are not free but they do not have the lowest possible standard of living and the government does seem to provide them basic services. He makes some points here and there, the US is not perfect, but as an alternative offers a dictatorship with a failed economy and an excuse. Castro does not seem to be living in incredible luxury or elevating himself to any kind of god, but he does seem to want to be an authoritative father figure to a lot of adults. It would seem more moral to let them make their own decisions among choices as contrasting as they desire, and the shear number of refugees would indicate they desire contrasting choices, but among peer countries in central america and the carribean they are not having the worst outcome. Castro would seem to be on a level with Kruschev, not quite the madman that Stalin or Mao was, but still a dictator in denial. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michael | 12/28/2013

    " Fidel may not be the monster our government portrays him as being. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 12/14/2013

    " This is an autobiography of Fidel Castro. In this book, he talks about his life and how he became the leader of Cuba. I used this book as research for my school project. It had pretty usefull info. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joanie | 12/7/2013

    " Inconsistant "facts" with the aforementionned memoirs. First published in Spanish then revised by Castro and re-published. The charisma is gold-plated. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marlies | 11/24/2013

    " Not really reading. Book on CD. But I recommend learning more about the Cuban revolution. Some very interesting points. Gets a little long and a little self-righteous but still interesting. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Amy | 10/22/2013

    " I tried reading about Fidel and just couldn't get into it. However, I give this book 2 stars because it is written using the style of questions and answers. Questions are asked in bold and then answers are provided -- a somewhat different way to "speak" or write an autobiography. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jay McCann | 6/10/2013

    " It is wonderful to hear the other side of history. Just as American history is warped to our advantage, so too is Castro's. It is a good read but must be taken with a grain (or six) of salt. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cassie | 3/1/2013

    " Got a bit long... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karan Bakshi | 12/31/2012

    " brilliantly written by the great man and a must read for all those who have communist ideals.. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Hillary Corwin | 2/1/2012

    " 600 pages pass quickly, and Castro's power in oration is made absolutely clear. The stories are fascinating, and it provides an interesting counterpoint to the version of these stories that are typically available to the US audience. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melanie | 1/31/2012

    " interesting read, great writing but after reading Dirty Havana Trilogy, not so sure it it so believable...PRO-Fidelista "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Henryfrank | 3/28/2011

    " I little colored in his favor but very interesting to hear, I think growing up in America he was never anything but a film clip and a demonized political figure in books. It's fascinating to hear his side of it as biased a version of reality as it is. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brenda | 2/10/2011

    " Absolutely astounding to hear Castro's story. Sadly, this brilliant man has been portrayed as a monster for decades. Brilliant, engaged and completely self-aware, it is refreshing to hear his own voice in this fascinating interview style biography. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Tasha | 9/15/2010

    " What an amazing book. It took me a while to get through but it was worth every moment. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rose | 8/15/2010

    " It's just so wonderful to 'listen' to fidel castro talk -- so much humility. I grow up in a capitalist culture, and it's enlightening to know what's in the other side of the fence. A must read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 KU | 6/26/2010

    " I had a hard time with the format of the book, ie question and answer, it was difficult for me to read. But, I did learn a lot about Fidel and the Cuban Revolution.

    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Henryfrank | 5/28/2010

    " I little colored in his favor but very interesting to hear, I think growing up in America he was never anything but a film clip and a demonized political figure in books. It's fascinating to hear his side of it as biased a version of reality as it is. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marlies | 4/12/2010

    " Not really reading. Book on CD. But I recommend learning more about the Cuban revolution. Some very interesting points. Gets a little long and a little self-righteous but still interesting. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Andrew | 6/15/2009

    " This is an autobiography of Fidel Castro. In this book, he talks about his life and how he became the leader of Cuba. I used this book as research for my school project. It had pretty usefull info. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melanie | 3/2/2009

    " interesting read, great writing but after reading Dirty Havana Trilogy, not so sure it it so believable...PRO-Fidelista "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Michael | 12/29/2008

    " Fidel may not be the monster our government portrays him as being. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joanie | 9/11/2008

    " Inconsistant "facts" with the aforementionned memoirs. First published in Spanish then revised by Castro and re-published. The charisma is gold-plated. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jay | 8/2/2008

    " It is wonderful to hear the other side of history. Just as American history is warped to our advantage, so too is Castro's. It is a good read but must be taken with a grain (or six) of salt. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Brenda | 5/3/2008

    " Absolutely astounding to hear Castro's story. Sadly, this brilliant man has been portrayed as a monster for decades. Brilliant, engaged and completely self-aware, it is refreshing to hear his own voice in this fascinating interview style biography. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Amy | 4/14/2008

    " I tried reading about Fidel and just couldn't get into it. However, I give this book 2 stars because it is written using the style of questions and answers. Questions are asked in bold and then answers are provided -- a somewhat different way to "speak" or write an autobiography. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joselema64 | 1/22/2008

    " Quite interesting book, very easy to understand due to its Spanish-English translation, Talks alot about Latin American history and come across lots of social issues, and in a way is a bit of Anti American way of thinking "

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About the Author
Author Fidel Castro

Fidel Castro is a Cuban communist revolutionary and politician who was Prime Minister of Cuba from 1959 to 1976, and President from 1976 to 2008. He also served as the Commander in Chief of the Cuban Revolutionary Armed Forces from 1959 to 2008, and as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba from 1961 until 2011. Politically a Marxist-Leninist, under his administration the Republic of Cuba became a one-party socialist state; industry and businesses were nationalized, and socialist reforms implemented in all areas of society. Internationally, Castro was the Secretary-General of the Non-Aligned Movement, from 1979 to 1983 and from 2006 to 2008.