Author’s note: This post was written in August of last year, but I remixed it a bit. Enjoy.
When I read Tracy Renee Jones’s “Aye Papi…………One Woman’s Love Affair With Latino Men” a year ago, I will admit, I was stoked.
An account from a Black Woman on her romances with Latino guys? I’ll read that.
Typing in “Black woman and Latino man” yields very few results. I mean forums from the 2000s detailing someone’s experiences are fine and dandy pero dame mas. So, instead of complaining about the absence of info on the subject, I decided to throw in my two cents on the Jones piece. Continue reading
By: Tamika Burgess of The Essence of Me
It would be weird to go to one of your family gatherings andsee Black people dancing to Spanish music,” someone said to me. “Why?” I asked. “Because…it would just be weird,” he responded. Continue reading
Diasporic Realness: Telling Our Stories is here! What is it you ask? It is Black Girl, Latin World’s first ever guest writers month! A whole month of new voices, fresh perspectives and a lot of Blackness.
Want to be apart of it? Hit up BGLW in the contact box below with a brief pitch on what you want to write. In addition to articles, creative submissions like poetry, essays, video content, reflections and the like are great. Please make sure the content is your own.
“Another day. Another opportunity” is a phrase often uttered by my best friend Ja’Michael. He is an artistic soul whose passion and warmth inspires everyone he comes in contact with. Ja’Michael truly embodies this statement.
His words, I reflect on, every time I wake up in the morning. What opportunities await me today? I am not just talking about big life changing ones, but the everyday things that make life worth living.
This is a journey that has been a long time coming. The Stories of Us is the play that I have been writing for six years but I never knew that I was writing it.
All of the stories share some Afro-Latin@, African American, Choco-taco realness that has been boiling up inside of me and situating itself around me ever since I was 13.
A few months ago, I got the news of my life. The Austin Latino New Play Festival called and they wanted to do a staged reading of my play The Stories of Us . This piece has come a long way since a small workshop in 2013. But more on the process later. If you are in the Austin-area, check out the festival. My play is May 16th at 8pm.
The Stories of Us is a collection of stories that dig deep into the intercultural conflict between African Americans and Latinos, African diaspora identity, and Afrolatinidad. This scrapbook of experiences, histories, and feelings takes its audience through African roots in Mexico, the time you told your brother you were dating a “black girl,” and that moment you were proud of your heritage, combining to reveal people of color trying to navigate each other’s worlds and build one together.
May 14-16 3 nights, 3 great new Latino plays Austin Latino New Play Festival with ScriptWorks at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center Get your tixs on line – http://latinoplayfestival.bpt.me
“I think music is a good way to learn Spanish,” he said after he completed a lesson on Jeremih and Pitbull’s “Don’t Tell Em’/No le diga”. My youngest brother hit the nail on the head with that one. Music can take anyone’s language learning from 10 to 100 real quick. It was only after listening to “No Tengo Dinero” by Los Kumbia Kings that I understood the “yo” form of “tener”. Music and media are great ways to make a language come alive.
My younger brothers and my mom sit at the dining room table that doubles as a classroom desk and we learn together. We discuss colors, numbers, phrases and everyday terms. Terms that will not only help them to chat with neighbors down the street but learn about a new culture. I love to teach the language but it is our talks about Afro-Latinidad that inspire me the most.
The dominant narrative on Blackness may be African American but this is my little way to counter it. For one class project, I had my family research and present Latinegr@ figures to the class. My mother showed us singer Maxwell. One of my brothers presented actor Laz Alonso. I was stoked that they were recognizing that the Black diaspora is diverse.
When I was a teenager in Spanish class, I learned nothing of Latinegr@ histories. That is why my goal is for them to see how learning Spanish relates to them. In addition to talking about Latinegr@s, we talk about African Americans who travel. We recite phrases like “Yo soy inteligente” because they are Black excellence. Spanish class is a memory for the laughs, jokes and moments we share. But most importantly, it is something they can take with them. A skill that will lead to jobs in the future and cross-cultural connections.
A skill that will become a part of their being and experience.
A moment that we will cherish forever.
This was originally published on the LatiNegr@s Project.