On September 23, 2013, the Constitutional Court in the Dominican Republic issued a ruling that effectively targeted and revoked the citizenship of descendants of Haitians born in the Dominican…
"The second part of my family’s narrative around race is that historically it hasn’t been enforced… finding your native grandmother or your black grandfather is not something that you are looking for right, you’re looking for whiteness you’re looking for some kind of way to alleviate your own oppression and often that means a history of whiteness, that’s just the way that Latin Americans work…because what does that mean… it means better job opportunities, it means that… ‘you’re not supposed to be here,’ you’re not supposed to be poor… you were once in Europe and you were once someone who had status… Racism is a hell of a drug and I shouldn’t just say racism, but white supremacy let’s be more specific. I think that people throw around the word ‘racism’ and they don’t know what it means, but white supremacist values in Latin America are very strong. They’re very strong."
Ecuadorian-American, Blanca E. Vega discusses her journey in uncovering her racial identity. From growing up as a “zambita,” to discovering the AfroAmerindian maroon republic in Ecuador, to seeing herself in an AfroEcuadorian enslaved woman who fought for her freedom through the legal system, Blanca was searching for racial completeness beyond pervasive whiteness. Read her blog on the topic:
Anonymous asked: Is Afro-latin@ used when someone looks black but is latin@? Or have some black yet mainly latin@?
AfroLatin@ is a person from or of Latin American descent that is of African ancestry. There are 150 million+ Afrodescendants in Latin America, about a third of the population.
'Black' and 'Afrodescendant' ie-AfroColombian, AfroDominican, AfroPeruvian is an identity that is personal and may be political, for visibility and human rights purposes. African ancestry is a fact. In so much of my research, it varies. One may proudly identify as say, AfroPeruvian but reject the term 'Black' because it was [still is, depending on context] used as a tool of subjugation and dehumanization. Some have said 'Black' does not signify a country or origin but rather colonialism.
Also important to point out, you do not have to “look” like you have African ancestry to have it. 95% of enslaved Africans went to Latin America and the Caribbean. Africans have been in Latin America for hundreds of years, same as Europeans, and there has been generations of mixing. Very multi-layered topic.
The AfroLatin@ Forum is a good resource to learn more:
Why make the distinction between Latin@s and AfroLatin@s? Aren’t we all just Latin@s?Identification as an “AfroLatin@” acknowledges the racial diversity among Latin Americans, Caribbeans and Latin@s and the historical, political, and social particularities that characterize the experiences of people of African descent throughout the Americas. By self-consciously identifying as AfroLatin@ we assert our cultural/ethnic origins AND our membership in the African diasporic community. “Black” and “Latin@” are not mutually exclusive identities - AfroLatin@s belong to both groups.
Desired Women—Undesired Mothers, Daughters, Sisters and Wives
by Marta I. Cruz-Janzen, pgs 282-295, The AfroLatin@ Reader
Join us on for a Conversation with Roberto Zurbano on his journey towards social activism.
Roberto Zurbano is the Fall 2013 Scholar/Writer in residence of the Connecticut College Center for Comparative Study of Race and Ethnicity. Zurbano’s career began in the field of literary criticism and from there he went on to support the Cuban Hip Hop movement and proceeded to his current focus, antiracists social activism in Cuba. Zurbano informs us that “…new paths are now opened for Cuban society, but that these do not open on their own and a new active force is the phenomena with which Blacks in Cuba defend their right to a place in society, one free of marginalization and racism.”
The event is free and open to the public. Photo ID required to enter building.
Co-Sponsored by: afrolatin@ forum, Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Department of Africana Studies and the Department of Latino Studies at New York University and the African Diaspora Forum
Wednesday, October 30th, 2013, 6:00 p.m
Location: King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center (KJCC) Auditorium
53 Washington Square South
New York University, New York NY 10012
People of African Descent in Bolivia
"Bolivians of African descent still find themselves living on the sidelines of society"
carlisax33 asked: Do you consider Haitianos to be Latino?
HI Carlisa! Thanks for your question, that question is brought up a lot, including “Are Brazilians Latino?”. It all comes down to self-identity. So although there are labels and categories that oversimplify, identity is still local and personal. We answer this question on our FAQ page:
What’s the difference between Latin@ and Hispanic?
Mariana Rondon’s bold and intelligently perceptive film Bad Hair isn’t really about hair, whether it is straight or coarse; but about Junior (Samuel Lange), a boy who doesn’t fit society’s conventional mold within gender roles, especially not in the world of his already overwhelmed and weary mother, who suspects that her son – who has distinct tastes and flair - has begun to show signs of homosexuality. Junior’s desire and fixation to envision himself as a straight-haired singer is perhaps – to his mother’s unrelenting scorn - an escape from reality and the only thing he can really control in his unique world.
curated by Chocolate Gringa