January 4, 2016 ~ Issue 4
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Afro-Latina ~ A woman with roots from any Latin American country
that is of, relates, or celebrates African a

Es Mi Cultura spreads awareness of the wonderful contributions Afro-Latinas are making to further advance our presence. Each month this newsletter spotlights Afro-Latinas and all their sabor, provides links to various articles and personal stories penned by, about, or for Afro-Latinos, along with book features, and additional information.
While this newsletter is aimed towards Afro-Latinas— we need to see people who look like us. Es Mi Cultura is for readers of both genders, all races, cultures, and backgrounds.

Honduran sisters, Victoria and Sophia Arzu are on a mission to get Latin American TV to include more Afro-Latinos and Indigenous Latinas in their daily programming. 
In 2014 they started, Proyecto Mas Color, an awareness social media campaign and online petition. In an 2014 interview with Ain't I Latina?, the Arzu sisters talk about why they started the campaign. 


What inspired you to launch Proyecto Más Color?

We have noticed the racial disparity in Latin American television programs from a very young age, and we want to bring awareness to the lack of representation of Afro-Latinos in Latin American media. This is a mission for social justice. The Latino community is diverse and it’s time for the Latin American media to start reflecting that diversity. This is an era of multiculturalism. It’s time for Latin American media to start catching up.

What do you hope the outcome to be for Proyecto Más Color? 

We foresee the inclusion of more people of color in Univision and Telemundo’s daily programming.

How have the ways Afro-Latinos been portrayed in Spanish-speaking media affected the way you’ve viewed yourself?

We don’t view ourselves according to what we see in the media. Our quest is to seek representation for our people and model for our children.

Why do you choose to identify as Afro-Latina? 

An Afro-Latino is a Latin American person of Black African ancestry, and that’s exactly what we are.

View Celia Cruz the Series ~ By Proyecto Mas Color
Ariana Brown is an Afro-Mexicana poet, performer & author
from San Antonio, Texas.

She is the recipient of the Andrew Julius Gutow Academy of American Poets Prize and was recently awarded the title of Best Poet at the 2014 College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational, a national competition in which her team representing UT Austin, took first place. In 2015, she was awarded the title of "Best Poem" for her piece, "Invocation". Ariana is currently working on her first manuscript and pursuing a degree in African & African Diaspora Studies and Mexican American Studies at UT Austin, where she co-founded Spitshine Poetry Slam in 2011. When she is not onstage, she is probably eating an avocado, listening to the Kumbia Kings, or validating brown girl rage in all its miraculous forms. Her work is published in HuizacheRattleBorderlands: Texas Poetry Review and is forthcoming in ¡Manteca!: An Anthology of Afro-Latin@ Poets from Arte Público Press.
"I have become a woman who writes poetry. I believe in my words, and therefore
myself because of this." ~
Ariana Brown
Poetry by Ariana Brown
Monica, of MonicaStyle Museis a proud Afro-Latina.
"She has grown up in a culturally Hispanic household, yet her Dominican heritage is put into question by others. Being Dominican should not have a skin requirement, and Monica brings forth a conversation that is pushed to the back-burner."
11-year-old Brazilian MC Soffia has been empowering
Black girls since age 6.

"MC Soffia sings about her own reality of a black girl, that she needs to love and affirm herself every day. ...she’s represents where she’s coming as a little black girl growing up in a society that definitively anti-black girl. Representation because she’s bringing to other little black girls someone to look up to and identify with in a world that wishes to make them invisible. For as we have seen in the world of adults, white children are also the preference in the infantile world as we have seen on the covers of parenting magazines featuring babies, television commercials featuring children and in adoption preferences."
"Africana" by Panamanian Hip Hop duo, Los Rakas. This is a feel-good tribute to women of the African diaspora.
Listen to "Africana"
"Negrita," by Nitty Scott, MC celebrates and embraces
the Hip Hop artist's Afro-Latina identity. 
Listen to "Negrita"

Penned  By, About, and For Us!

20 Amazing Afro-Latina Moments in 2015

At a Santo Domingo Hair Salon, Rethinking an Ideal Look

11 Things Black-American Spanish Speakers Encounter 

Mexico Takes Big Step In Finally Recognizing Afro-Latinos

Heartbreaking Look at the Lives of Dominican Nannies 

The Real Legacy of Afro-Caribbean Immigrants

I Am Biracial, Black, and Boriqua

Can You Be Black and Latinx?

You Sho' Is Ugly: One Love (Unity) & Why It Matters to Afro-Latinas

Why We Need Afro-Latin@ Theatre

Why NYC is Home

Career Lessons From Award-Winning Journalist Soledad O'Brien

Mexican-Born Lupita Nyong'o is Dragged for Being Called Latina

Spain Elects Their First Black Woman Into Parliament

Light Skin Privilege in the Latino Community

The Actor Who's Making Strides For Afro-Latinos In Hollywood 

Harvard Host Symposium on the Afro-descendant Movement in Latin America

My Blackness is Beautiful 

This Afro-Cuban Life

The Rise of Los Rakas 

Zoila Darton On Embracing Identity & Building A Latin Music Empire
"The Panamanian-born, Shoshana Johnson holds nothing back in this harrowing account of an ordinary woman caught in extraordinary circumstances. She reveals decisions made by chain of command that may have led to her twenty-two-day imprisonment, describes the pain of post-traumatic stress disorder, and shares the surprising story of how a specialist in a maintenance company ended up on the front lines of war. Told with exceptional bravery and candor, I’m Still Standing is at once a provocative look at the politics of war and the unforgettable story of a single mom and soldier who became an American hero.

In March 2003, Operation Iraqi Freedom made world headlines when a U. S. army convoy was attacked en route to Baghdad. Shoshana Johnson became the first black female prisoner of war in United States history."

Es Mi Cultura is published every first Monday of the month by Tamika Burgess. Tamika is a Afro-Panamanian, NYC- based writer, blogger, and copy editor. Learn more about her by visiting

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View past issues of Es Mi Cultura: HERE
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