Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Latino Americans on PBS

PBS is currently running a fascinating six hour documentary titled "Latino Americans" that "is the first major documentary series for television to chronicle the rich and varied history and experiences of Latinos, who have helped shape North America over the last 500-plus years and have become, with more than 50 million people, the largest minority group in the U.S. The changing and yet repeating context of American history provides a backdrop for the drama of individual lives. It is a story of immigration and redemption, of anguish and celebration, of the gradual construction of a new American identity that connects and empowers millions of people today. Learn More..."

I will have a full discussion on the documentary once that it is finished, but so far I have mixed feelings, several of which are anchored (unfortunately for PBS) on my pedantic need for historical accuracy, and while learning quite a bit about early Mexican-American history (so far most of Latino-Americans is really Mexican-Americans, and that's understandable, as Latinos of Mexican ancestry make up about 65% of all "Latino Americans"), I've shaken my head at some of the historical issues raised when they start discussing some of the rest of us... or some general pedantic teeth-grinding misnomers - "Dear PBS, it is the Medal of Honor and NOT the Congressional Medal of Honor."

By the way:
Become a part of the LATINO AMERICANS project. Make a video describing what being Latino means to you, share your family traditions, tell us how you celebrate your heritage and culture or let us know about your role models. Share your story and become part of ours.
You can submit your video here.

And another by the way, this coming Sunday, September 29, at 2PM I will delivering a lecture titled "On Identity in the Arts: What Does It Mean to be Latino?" at the Ridderhof Martin Gallery at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, VA. Free and open to the general public...

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