“I’m deeply gratified in receiving the Medal of Freedom. The freedom of association means that people can come together in organization to fight for solutions to the problems they confront in their communities. The great social justice changes in our country have happened when people came together, organized, and took direct action. It is this right that sustains and nurtures our democracy today. the civil rights movement, the labor movement, the women’s movement, the equality movement for our LGBT brothers and sisters are all manifestations of these rights. I thank President Obama for raising the importance of organizing to the highest level of merit and honor. It is a unique honor and privilege to be included in this group of distinguished individuals being honored here today and the communities they represent.”
–Dolores Huerta, 5/30/2012
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From NBCLatino, by Adrian Carrasquillo
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Josefina Lopez is best known for authoring “Real Women Have Curves,” a play turned movie which challenged cultural assumptions on beauty, marriage and a woman’s role in society. Her latest effort could be described as even more personal – “Detained in the Desert,” a movie from her and director Iliana Sosa, is an uncompromising look at the topic of immigration in the U.S. — something they feel has been completely ignored in the powerful film medium.
“I was undocumented for 13 years,” Lopez says. “As a little girl it really damaged me. You don’t feel human, you internalize this invisibility and really feel like you are an alien.” The movie is centered on Sandi, a second-generation dark skinned Latina and Lou Becker, a controversial talk show radio host. “They get stranded in the desert and have to help each other out,” Sosa says. “They have to set their political differences aside – they become like the undocumented immigrants who die out there, trapped.”
Lopez gained firsthand knowledge of the plight of undocumented immigrants who attempt to cross the desert to enter the U.S. when she was given a tour of the areas in Arizona by Enrique Morones, who founded Border Angels. The non-profit organizations works to “stop the unnecessary deaths of individuals in the desert by delivering water in key points where migrants cross the desert.”
Morones, who will play himself in the movie, tells unbelievable stories of his experiences as a border angel. He says he has had confrontations with militiamen in Arizona who poke holes in the water gallons he leaves for migrants. He also told Lopez he puts down crosses when he comes across a body in the desert and says he has seen the spirits of those who perished sitting in the back of his truck.
During her tour with him, Lopez was eventually taken to a cemetery with 700 unmarked graves of undocumented immigrants who died making the fateful trip. It is because of this “haunting” experience that she decided to donate the proceeds from the movie, which begins filming on June 21, to Border Angels.
My name is Martha Gonzalez and I am a Chicana artivista, singer and songwriter for East LA based Quetzal. I want to invite you all to support a very important project that I have been working on.
Entre Mujeres is a translocal music composition project between Chicanas/Latinas in the U.S. and Jarochas/Mexican female musicians in Mexico. This project seeks to make the voices, ideas and translocal dialogues between Chicanas and Jarochas visible through the medium of song.
A song as a sonic and literary manifestation is life’s sound-scape, a unique cathartic memento, as well as a powerful political tool. Without question a song is also an important historical text. A person’s testimonio (testimony), life views, triumphs, and struggles can be expressed into song lyrics. In the end a song, like a testimonio is what stands as moment lived. Multiplied by community this can be an active exercise in consensus and knowledge production. As a collaborator in various songwriting moments I have witnessed time and again how this method and process creates space, builds community, challenges multiple patriarchal systems, and can potentially produce knowledge that is accessible.
Throughout this project there has been convivencia, trust, testimonios that have generated important moments of healing, and knowledge production. In these ways Entre Mujeres Project is a testament to the kind of collective knowledge generated across U.S. Mexican borders. Continue reading »Filed under Random creativity | Comment (0)
From MALCS Chair Monica Torres:
Some good news from the journal. Chicana/Latina Studies: the Journal of Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social has appointed two new editors to its staff.
Elisa Rodriguez y Gibson has been named co-editor. Rodriguez y Gibson is an assistant professor at Loyola Marymount University. She teaches courses on Chicana/o literature, Cultural Studies, and feminist theory. She has written on the work of Lorna Dee Cervantes, Elizabeth Martinez, Carmen Tafolla, Naomi Quiñonez, Josefina Lopez, Joy Harjo, and Helena Maria Viramontes. She is the editor of Lorna Dee Cervantes: A Critical Anthology (forthcoming Wings Press, 2011) and has contributed to various reference works, including the Oxford Encyclopedia of Latino and Latina History in the U.S. and the Encyclopedia of Ethnic American Literatures published by Greenwood Press.
Linda Heidenreich, Associate Professor at Washington State University, has been named book review editor. Heidenreich teaches in the Department of Critical Culture, Gender, and Race Studies. Her research and teaching interests include Chicana/Chicano studies and history, Queer studies, and the history and culture of 19th-century west, especially California history.
Congratulations to Josie and the national board of Chicana/Latina Studies for bringing these selection processes to a successful close. –Monica
We are now less than three months away from the Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social (MALCS) Summer Institute which will be held July 18-21, 2012 at UC Santa Barbara. One of the highlights of the Summer Institute is the Tortuga Award Dinner which honors one special artist, scholar, activist every year, but in 2012 we also want to acknowledge the many significant accomplishments of all our members. Please send your accolades to my email address: email@example.com. We look forward to learning and celebrating with you this summer!
Aida Hurtado, UCSB Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies and
Luis Leal Endowed Chair, 2012 Summer Institute Site Chair
- Writing Workshops: How to Write the Academic Article - postmark deadline June 13, 2012
- Call for Member Accolades & Achievements
- Call for Performers , and Call for Artists – deadlines Monday, May 21
- Call for Vendors - June 1
The Summer Institute website with complete program, housing, travel, and registration information will be available soon. Until then, here are some preliminary housing and travel details to help your planning.Filed under Announcements, General News | Comment (0)
DEADLINE TO APPLY: Monday, May 21, 2012
This year’s Summer Institute will be hosted at the University of California Santa Barbara, July 18-21, 2012. MALCS, in collaboration with the UCSB site committee, seeks performers for the Summer Institute’s Noche de Cultura, Friday, July 20th whose act reflects the values of MALCS and this year conference’s theme, “Todos somos Arizona: Confronting the Attack on Difference.” The national anti-immigrant and anti-Chicana/o Latina/o legislation speaks to the continued fear of difference within the United States. Difference across race, genders, sexualities, abilities, religions, national origins, languages, and other social identities continues to draw attacks against our communities. The institute’s theme is inspired by organizations such as “Todos Somos Arizona,” a solidarity group that seeks to counter Arizona’s oppressive legislation.
MALCS invites self-identified Women of Color/Indigenous performers/artists, and/or collectives to submit. The chosen performers will be compensated for their time and travel, as well as gain publicity from promotional materials for the conference. Please inquire by Monday, May 21, 2012 to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name, address, email, phone number, short bio (200 words max), title of performance (if applicable), and video (if possible). For more information, email email@example.com.
Submitted by Adrianna Santos, UCSBFiled under Announcements, MALCS business | Comment (0)