1.38 Million Afro-Descendants Are Identified on the Mexican Census for the First Time

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Mexico on 2015-12-13 01:52Z by Steven

1.38 Million Afro-Descendants Are Identified on the Mexican Census for the First Time

Remezcla
2015-12-10

Yara Simón

Since the 1910 Mexican Revolution, Mexico’s national identity has been defined by mestizaje – a term that recognizes mixed racial ancestry of the New World after colonization. But although Mexico’s African presence was considerable from the start of colonization, this “third root” is often excluded from classic views of mestizaje, which focus on indigenous and European ancestries.

For over 15 years, Afro-Mexicans have been been trying to remedy this by pushing for formal recognition in Mexico’s national constitution. Currently, Mexico and Chile are the only countries in Latin America that don’t legally recognize their Afro-descendants as distinct ethnic groups, which activists believe contributes to fight anti-Black racism.

And this year, a group of activists claimed a victory on the path to this recognition. Afro-Mexican advocacy organization Mexico Negro successfully fought for Afro-Mexicans to be included on the national census. According to Quartz, this year was the first time that people of African descent were able to accurately identify themselves on the census, revealing that 1.2 percent of Mexicans – 1.38 million people – are of African descent…

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Leaving to learn

Posted in Articles, Biography, Campus Life, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Mexico, Passing, Slavery, United States on 2015-12-03 02:37Z by Steven

Leaving to learn

Columbia Daily Spectator
2015-12-02

Claire Liebmann


Courtesy of Karl Jacoby

Several years ago while browsing newspaper clippings online, Karl Jacoby, a history professor at Columbia, came across the story of William Ellis—a Texan slave who built a million dollar fortune while posing as a Mexican millionaire in New York, essentially hacking the system of American expansionism and oppression.

Tracking Ellis as he took on different names and personas was difficult: Ellis deliberately introduced falsehoods into the historical record to ensure that his racial passing was accepted by the broader society, but Jacoby stuck with it. Years later, this chance encounter with Ellis’ story would come to drive his personal historical research. Undertaking a yearlong leave of absence, he pursued his interest in reclaiming untold narratives, working on his book The Strange Career of William Ellis: The Texas Slave Who Became a Mexican Millionaire.

Jacoby’s academic career is driven by his interest in complicating comfortable historical narratives. This process of reinvention and rediscovery depends on another kind of separation from the establishment: Jacoby’s reliance on his leave of absence as a means of promoting academic innovation…

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National Affairs: Who Would Be King

Posted in Arts, Biography, Caribbean/Latin America, Media Archive, Mexico, Passing, Slavery, United States on 2015-12-02 22:39Z by Steven

National Affairs: Who Would Be King

Time
1923-10-08

Word came to the U. S. that William Henry Ellis, who preferred to style himself Guillermo Enrique Eliseo, died in Mexico City. Mr. Ellis was one of the most remarkable men who ever acted as agent for the State Department. He was known chiefly for the famous incident in which he delivered a commercial Treaty from this country to King Menelik of Abyssinia. But his unusual history began much earlier.

He was born in Victoria, Tex., in 1864 and claimed to be of Cuban parentage, on account of which he used the Spanish form of…

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Afro-Mexicans Are Pushing For Legal Recognition in Mexico’s National Constitution

Posted in Anthropology, Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, Census/Demographics, Law, Media Archive, Mexico on 2015-11-12 02:39Z by Steven

Afro-Mexicans Are Pushing For Legal Recognition in Mexico’s National Constitution

Remezcla
2015-11-09

Walter Thompson-Hernández
Los Angeles, California

The myth of the Latin American racial democracy, scholars believe, began in Brazil following the abolishment of slavery in 1888, when government officials declared that high rates of racial mixing had officially absolved the nation of its racial problems. This thinking eventually transcended Brazil and spread to a host of other Latin America countries, including Mexico.

But Mexico had its own nuanced understanding of the Latin American racial democracy – one called mestizaje, that was created by government officials, intellectuals, and artists following the 1910 Mexican Revolution: the erroneous belief that Mexico’s ethnic and racial mixture was solely composed of indigenous and European ancestry. This was also a time period when Mexico’s citizenry began to believe that “Mexicanness” and blackness were mutually exclusive and could not co-exist. Mestizaje, however, did not only exclude blackness from its national patrimony, but also left out a host of other racial identities from Mexico’s conversation about race…

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Black Mexico: The African Roots in Mexico

Posted in Caribbean/Latin America, History, Live Events, Media Archive, Mexico, United States on 2015-10-27 20:17Z by Steven

Black Mexico: The African Roots in Mexico

Western Connecticut State University
Student Center Theater
181 White Street
Danbury, Connecticut
Wednesday, 2015-10-28, 10:50 EDT (Local Time)

Gloria Arjona, Lecturer in Spanish
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena

In Celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month

Dr. Gloria Arjona, a lecturer at CalTech Pasadena and University of Southern California, will present a live music and multimedia lecture about “Black Mexico: The African Roots in Mexico” at 10:50 a.m. in the Student Center Theater on the WCSU Midtown campus, 181 White St. in Danbury. This Hispanic Heritage Month event will be free and the public is invited.

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Blackness and Mestizaje in Mexico and Central America

Posted in Anthologies, Books, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Mexico, Social Science on 2015-10-27 17:58Z by Steven

Blackness and Mestizaje in Mexico and Central America

Africa World Press
2013
176 pages
ISBN: 978-1592219339

Edited by:

Elisabeth Cunin, Sociologist
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, France

Odile Hoffmann, Geographer
Institut de Recherche pour le Développement, France

American configurations, because of their originality, force us to adopt plural visions, toward the margins, with particular emphasis on situations of mixtures and ambiguous categories (Afro-indigenous, creoles, mestizos), multiple belongings (national and transnational), or seemingly contradictory practices (black culture without black people, mobilization without ethnic claims).

Beyond the ideal of a homogenized citizenship produced by mestizaje, there are complex social dynamics based on difference and indifference, stigmatization and fascination, homogenization and othering. We believe that mestizaje is not only a “myth” and multiculturalism a “challenge” to it. The essays in this book investigate the different processes of racialization, ethnicization, and negotiation of the belongings that characterize mestizaje as multiculturalism.

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Race, color, and income inequality across the Americas

Posted in Articles, Brazil, Caribbean/Latin America, Census/Demographics, Economics, Media Archive, Mexico, Social Science, United States on 2015-10-11 20:32Z by Steven

Race, color, and income inequality across the Americas

Demographic Research
Volume 31
Article 24 (2014-09-19)
pages 735-756
DOI: 10.4054/DemRes.2014.31.24

Stanley Bailey, Associate Professor of Sociology
University of California, Irvine

Aliya Saperstein, Assistant Professor of Sociology
Stanford University

Andrew Penner, Associate Professor of Sociology
University of California, Irvine

Background: Racial inequality in the U.S. is typically described in terms of stark categorical difference, as compared to the more gradational stratification based on skin color often said to prevail in parts of Latin America. However, nationally representative data with both types of measures have not been available to explicitly test this contrast.

Objective: We use novel, recently released data from the U.S. and 18 Latin American countries to describe household income inequality across the region by perceived skin color and racial self-identification, and examine which measure better captures racial disparities in each national context.

Results: We document color and racial hierarchies across the Americas, revealing some unexpected patterns. White advantage and indigenous disadvantage are fairly consistent features, whereas blacks at times have higher mean incomes than other racial populations. Income inequality can best be understood in some countries using racial categories alone, in others using skin color; in a few countries, including the U.S., a combination of skin color and self-identified race best explains income variation.

Conclusions: These results complicate theoretical debates about U.S. racial exceptionalism and methodological debates about how best to measure race. Rather than supporting one measure over another, our cross-national analysis underscores race‟s multidimensionality. The variation in patterns of inequality also defies common comparisons between the U.S. on the one hand and a singular Latin America on the other.

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Guadalupe and the Castas: The Power of a Singular Colonial Mexican Painting

Posted in Articles, Arts, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Mexico on 2015-09-23 14:33Z by Steven

Guadalupe and the Castas: The Power of a Singular Colonial Mexican Painting

Mexican Studies/Estudios Mexicanos
Volume 31, Number 2
pages 218-247
DOI: 10.1525/mex.2015.31.2.218

Sarah Cline, Research Professor of History
University of California, Santa Barbara

A mid-eighteenth-century casta painting by Luis de Mena uniquely unites the image of the Virgin of Guadalupe and casta (mixed-race) groupings, along with scenes of everyday life in Mexico, and the natural abundance of New Spain. Reproduced multiple times, the painting has not been systematically analyzed. This article explores individual elements in their colonial context and the potential meanings of the painting in the modern era.

Una pintura de Luis de Mena sobre las castas, de mediados del siglo xviii, reúne de manera singular la imagen de la Virgen de Guadalupe, los agrupamientos de castas y escenas de la vida cotidiana en México, junto con la abundancia natural de Nueva España. Aunque reproducida en múltiples ocasiones, la pintura no ha sido analizada sistemáticamente. Este artículo explora sus elementos individuales en el contexto colonial y los significados potenciales de la pintura en la época moderna.

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In Memoriam: Tony Gleaton

Posted in Articles, Arts, Biography, Caribbean/Latin America, Media Archive, Mexico on 2015-09-19 01:59Z by Steven

In Memoriam: Tony Gleaton

The afrolatin@ forum
2015-09-01

Tony Gleaton, among the first photographers to document Latin Americans of African descent, passed away last week. He leaves behind an impressive body of work which undoubtedly contributed to the growing Black consciousness movement throughout the Americas.

Tony began his Latin American photographic journey in the southern Pacific coast of Mexico in 1986; by the time his project was completed he had traveled through most of Central and South America in his search for “Black folk.” …

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Black Mexico: Unearthing the ‘Third Root’

Posted in Articles, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Mexico on 2015-08-25 14:20Z by Steven

Black Mexico: Unearthing the ‘Third Root’

The Compton Herald
Compton, California
2015-08-16

Jarrette Fellows, Jr.

Spaniards, African slaves, and indigenous Indians in Colonial Mexico forged a unique ethnic blend known as ‘Black Mexicans

This multiple-part series will unravel the little-known history of how Mexico’s 15th-century assimilation of Spaniards, indigenous Indians, and African slaves into “Black Mexico,” eventually led to the founding of Los Angeles by Black Mexicans and Mestizos in the 17th century when California was still under the rule of Mexico. Even though the Black imprint in Mexico is unraveling more and more as time moves on, the reality of the truth is still largely mired in a Shadow History because the masses do not frequent libraries and this truth has never been taught as a history lesson in Mexico, much less as historic text in the U.S. To now, this invaluable historic truth has largely been available as scholarly works. The Compton Herald sought out this history, scaled down its volume from multiple scholarly sources, and now present it in nine parts for public consumption — Jarrette

THE INDIGENOUS PEOPLE of ancient Spanish America were the Aztecs, Mayans, Olmecs, Toltecs, Zapotecs and the Mixtecs, who inhabited a geographical area encompassing present-day Florida and much of what is now the Western U.S., Mexico, and parts of the Caribbean. These ancient peoples comprised the pre-Columbian indigenous civilizations before the arrival of all-conquering Spain as a colonizer of the region prior to the 16th century.  These indigenous natives constituted modern-day Mexico’s “First Root.”…

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