Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club

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Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club (1929–39: Lyceum) was a Cuban women's cultural, social, and physical fitness organization. Founded in 1929 in Havana, its first president was the journalist, suffragist and feminist, Berta Arocena de Martínez Márquez. The society established Cuba's first free public library, first children's library, and first course of instruction for librarians.

Early history[edit]

Modeled after similar Spanish women's social organizations,[1] the Lyceum was founded in Havana by Berta Arocena, Carmen Castellanos, Dulce María Castellanos, Carmelina Guanche, Rebeca Gutiérrez, Matilde Martínez Márquez, Lillian Mederos, Reneé Méndez Capote, Sarah Méndez Capote, María Teresa Moré, Alicia Santamaría, Ofelia Tomé, and María Josefa Vidaurreta in 1929. Arocena served as the first president.[2] Similar liberal and cultural societies[3] of the period included the Union Club and the Vedado Tennis Club, which likewise predominantly consisted of Cuban members.[4]

Merger[edit]

In 1939, Lyceum merged with "Tennis de Señoritas" and was renamed the Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club. The organization's concentration included "education, public service, art, music, and democratic organization".[5] It published a monthly magazine, Revista Lyceum, of which Mirta Aguirre served as assistant editor-in-chief.[6] The Lyceum founded the country's first free public library and Cuba's first children's library,[2] as well as offering the first librarian training class.[7] The Lyceum also hosted notable art events in its exhibition hall, such as that of Pablo Picasso in 1942.[8]

Dissolution and legacy[edit]

The government of Fidel Castro disbanded the society in 1968 and many of its members were exiled to other countries.[2] The Cuban Women's Club (1968-), formed in Miami, Florida, US, is modeled after the Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Stoner (2000), p. 80
  2. ^ a b c "Lyceum and Lawn Tennis Club (1929–1986)". University of Miami Libraries. Retrieved 28 November 2014. 
  3. ^ Wedgeworth, Robert (January 1993). World Encyclopedia of Library and Information Services. American Library Association. p. 235. ISBN 978-0-8389-0609-5. 
  4. ^ Scarpaci, Joseph L.; Segre, Roberto; Coyula, Mario (2002). Havana: Two Faces of the Antillean Metropolis. UNC Press Books. p. 109. ISBN 978-0-8078-5369-6. 
  5. ^ Stoner, K. Lynn; Pérez, Luís Hipólito Serrano (January 2000). Cuban and Cuban-American Women: An Annotated Bibliography. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 80. ISBN 978-0-8420-2643-7. 
  6. ^ Feeney, Megan J. (2008). Hollywood in Havana: Film Reception and Revolutionary Nationalism in Cuba Before 1959. ProQuest. p. 209. ISBN 978-0-549-80869-5. 
  7. ^ Quinn, Mary Ellen (8 May 2014). Historical Dictionary of Librarianship. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. p. 91. ISBN 978-0-8108-7545-6. 
  8. ^ Carpentier, Alejo; Acosta, Luz Merino (January 2004). A puertas abiertas: textos críticos sobre arte español (in Spanish). Universidad Santiago de Compostela. p. 245. ISBN 978-84-9750-277-1. 
  9. ^ Ruiz, Vicki L.; Korrol, Virginia Sánchez (3 May 2006). Latinas in the United States, set: A Historical Encyclopedia. Indiana University Press. p. 183. ISBN 0-253-11169-2.