Euphoria to Disillusion

Ernesto Cardenal supported the Frente Sandinista de Liberación Nacional (FSLN) revolutionary movement and its successful overthrow of the dictatorship of Anastasio Somoza Debayle in 1979. The items in this section reflect Cardenal’s involvement in the revolutionary efforts along with his time as Minister of Culture for the new Sandinista government.

The revolutionary movement in Nicaragua sparked a wave of international solidarity, especially among activists and writers. Cardenal’s time as Minister of Culture (1979–1987) saw the creation of many impactful programs, including poetry workshops, cultural centers, and international book fairs.

In 1994, Cardenal renounced the FSLN as he disagreed with the authoritarian direction in which the party was headed under Daniel Ortega.