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Archive for the ‘Culture’ Category

How Does your Latino Family Celebrate Thanksgiving?

Latinos have a way of making American traditions all their own. We asked you on Twitter and Facebook, how does your family add some Latino flair to Thanksgiving? Latino USA producer Brenda Salinas joins host Maria Hinojosa in the studio to share your responses.

Photo courtesy of Alejandro Linares Garcia, Wikimedia Commons

Latino Horror Fest

 What kinds of scary movies do Latinos love best? Maria Hinojosa talks with filmmaker Edwin Pagán, who runs the site, about his favorites.

 Photo courtesy of Angus Stewart.

pagan Edwin Pagán is a New York-based filmmaker, producer, photographer, cinematographer, screenwriter and cultural activist with over 25-years of hands-on experience in content creation, film production, design concurrence and branding, and social media manager in both the documentary and narrative film sectors. His extensive experience with arts groups includes working at the Bronx Council on the Arts (BCA), Association of Hispanic Arts (AHA), and Black Filmmaker Foundation. He also co-founded the PAX Theatre Community artist collective as a means of expanding community-based arts participation in the South Bronx.

Pagán has served on the boards of various organizations including the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) and was president of its New York chapter, and more recently the Hispanic Organization of Latino Actors (HOLA). He has also served on numerous juries, selection and curatorial committees for the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), NYC Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), New York International Latino Film Festival and prestigious Tribeca Institutes’ Tribeca All Access Connects initiative, among others. He has also curated the NewLatino Filmmakers Screening Series at Anthology Film Archives for the past 10 years.

He is currently producing “BRONX BURNING,” a documentary that chronicles the rise, fall and resurrection of the South Bronx. His production company, Pagan-Images, will produce the film. Pagán is the founder-in-chief of LATIN HORROR, an online portal geared to the genre of Latin horror in all its forms. He is also writing a book on the subject titled “MIEDO – The History of Latin Horror.”

Turning Art into Activism: Favianna Rodriguez

You have probably seen her posters at immigrant rights marches around the country, but never knew who the artist was behind the captivating images. Artist, activist, and California native Favianna Rodriguez joins the live show to discuss where the personal meets the intersection of art and activism, and how she sees her own artwork fitting into the fight for immigrant rights. She also talks about how California issues have had a larger impact nationwide.

Below are the images Favianna talks about during her interview:

A1_1 slideshow









































A1_faviannaFavianna Rodriguez is a transnational interdisciplinary artist and cultural organizer. Her art and collaborative projects deal with migration, global politics, economic injustice, patriarchy, and interdependence . Rodriguez lectures globally on the power of art, cultural organizing and technology to inspire social change, and leads art workshops at schools around the country. In addition to her fine arts and community work, Rodriguez partners with social movement groups around the world to create art that’s visionary, inspirational, radical and, most importantly, transformational. When Favianna is not making art, she is directing CultureStrike, a national arts organization that engages artists, writers and performers in migrant rights. In 2009, she co-founded, a national online organizing network dedicated to the political empowerment of Latino communities.

About Culture/Strike:

CultureStrike began in the summer of 2010 as a petition to honor the boycott of Arizona after that state passed its anti-immigrant law SB 1070. CultureStrike, which includes Wordstrike and Artstrike, seeks to organize artists, writers and other creative workers to strike back against anti-immigrant laws and attitudes. Their work is premised on the belief that culture, as the realm of ideas, images, and stories, is where people make sense of the world, find meaning and forge solidarity.

Eddie Zazueta: Bay Area Rhymes

Nineteen-year-old Bay Area poet and rapper Eddie Zazueta writes about hip hop, street culture, and life in the Bay Area. He performed two original pieces for us at our live show in Sacramento.

Eddie opened with his song “Around the Sun,” where he speaks to the influence of hip-hop in his life:

And he closed with a performance of his poem “South Berkeley,” where he talks about life in the neighborhood where he grew up, and how it’s changing.

Photo courtesy of Youth Radio.


Eddie Zazueta is a rapper and poet from Oakland, California. Eddie is a youth participant of Remix Your Life, a program of Youth Radio. Youth Radio is an Oakland-based media company that focuses on training youth in various forms of media production.

Forbidden Words and Forgotten Arts: Daniel Alarcón

Peruvian-born author Daniel Alarcón brings us a story about cultural adaptation and breaking interracial taboos, called “The Forbidden Word”. The story was originally produced by Radio Ambulante, the Spanish-language storytelling radio program he runs. He talks with Maria Hinojosa about the project, and discusses his new novel, titled “At Night We Walk in Circles”, about a young Latin American actor traveling with an avant-garde theater group. Special thanks to Radio Ambulante’s Martina Castro.

And here’s Radio Ambulante’s original “Palabra Prohibida/Forbidden Word” story, en español:


Daniel Alarcon (c) Adrian KinlochDANIEL ALARCÓN is author of “War by Candlelight”, a finalist for the 2005 PEN-Hemingway Award, and “Lost City Radio”, named a Best Novel of the Year by the San Francisco Chronicle and The Washington Post, among others. His writing has appeared in McSweeney’s, n+1, and Harper’s, and he has been named one of The New Yorker’s 20 under 40. He lives in San Francisco, California.

About Radio Ambulante: Radio Ambulante is a Spanish-language radio program that tells Latin American stories from anywhere Spanish is spoken, including the United States.

Draco Rosa: Lucha y Vida

Maria Hinojosa talks to musician Robi Draco Rosa about his fight against cancer, his life as a former child performer, and his latest album “Vida,” which features performers like Ricky Martin and Shakira. The former Menudo heartthrob gives insight into his view on life’s struggles and how they are reflected in his art. He is now launching his first tour since his illness.

Photo courtesy Digital Girl Inc.


Draco Rosa (born June 27, 1969), also known as Robi Draco Rosa and Robby Rosa, is a Puerto Rican Grammy Award winning musician, dancer, singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer and actor. Born as Robert Edward Rosa Suárez on Long Island, New York and raised in Ponce, Puerto Rico, he originally garnered fame as a member of boy band Menudo in the 1980s. As co-writer and co-producer of many of Ricky Martin’s hits in English and in Spanish, he created the framework for the revolution in bilingual music careers that continue to dominate the charts to the present day. His latest album, Vida, is truly a celebration of life. He recorded it after he announced in 2011 that he had been diagnosed with cancer.

Sabiduría: Luchadores

For a few words of wisdom this week, we turn to the luchadores, the masked wrestlers of Mexico. Jasmine Garsd brings us the words of one fighter who’s been combating opponents in the ring, and homophobia in society. This luchador is part of Los Exóticos, a group of fighters in drag based in Mexico City.

Jasmine Garsd was born in Argentina and hosts NPR’s Alt.Latino podcast. As a journalist she’s worked on the NPR programs Morning Edition, Talk of the Nation and Tell Me More. She has covered a wide variety of topics for radio including immigration issues.

Luchador Name Generator

If you ever need your very own luchador name, we have the solution for you. Just enter your name and choose your gender (“other” is an option).

Having trouble viewing this on your mobile device? Try this.

Tell us your name on Twitter, using #LUSALUCHA.

The LUCHADOR Face-off

To get in character for this week’s show, ¡LUCHA!, we came up with our own fighting aliases. The best Luchador name gets a special prize. Help us choose a winner!

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey , the world’s leading questionnaire tool.

Having trouble accessing this on a mobile device? Try this.

Austin Breakfast Tacos

Breakfast taco fiend Mando Rayo takes us on a tour of the best morning eateries in Austin, Texas. He is the co-author of “Austin Breakfast Tacos: The Story of the Most Important Taco of the Day”.

Photo courtesy of Filipa Rodrigues


Haley_PicHaley Howle is a radio producer for KUTX in Austin, Texas. Previously, Howle worked as a producer for the award-winning music journalism program Texas Music Matters and worked to launch the Austin Music Map. She is an eighth generation Texan and prefers her breakfast tacos on flour tortillas with a large horchata on ice.

Ode To The Plantain

Maria Hinojosa and producer Daisy Rosario sit down to chat about that staple of the Caribbean Latino’s diet, the plantain. Or, as Daisy calls it, “the Latino potato.”


Daisy_faceDaisy Rosario is a comedian, writer and producer of things from radio stories to live events. Recently graduated from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, she also works with The Moth and the Upright CitizensBrigade Theatre. Daisy is an obsessive baseball fan.

#Latino Problems

Being bicultural, multicultural, ambicultural…it can get complicated. We want to help out. We’ve teamed up with Latina’s Magazine’s advice columnist Pauline Campos for a new recurring segment we like to call #LatinoProblems. Our social media diva Brenda Salinas attended a conference in New York for Latinos in social media in called Latism, and they found plenty of people with plenty of questions.



Pauline Campos is Latina Magazine’s advice & relationship columnist,Latino USA’s #LatinoProblems advice expert on NPR, editor of the ebook anthology, Strong Like Butterfly, and contributes to various websites. Pauline blogs three times a week at Aspiring Mama (or when she remember to take her Adderall) & is the founder of Girl Body Pride. Strong like Butterfly is currently available on Smashwords


brenda headshot Brenda Salinas is a regio-montana by birth, tejana by choice. Before coming on board as an associate producer with Latino USA, she was awarded the highly competitive Kroc Fellowship at NPR. She has reportedpieces for Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Weekend Edition, Weekends on All Things Considered and for Houston Public Radio.



Sabiduría: Eating To Heal

The information we get from doctors around food and health can often be scary or off-putting. Robert Karimi, performing as Mero Cocinero, wants to bring together stories, culture and other recipes for good health. Are we to take what doctors tell us as gospel, or is it just another level of chisme? Karimi’s new performance project, Viva la Soul Power! is a pop up performance kitchen with delicious happenings all throughout Chicago to get people to reconnect to their cultures to promote well-being and counter Type 2 Diabetes and obesity. It has online and live events in Chicago throughout the month of October.

Mero Cocinero Karimi is an Iranian-Guatemalan cook to revolutionaries & dreamers, and host of The Cooking Show con Karimi & Comrades, a live cooking performance for your heart, mind, stomach & funny bone. His role as an advocate for healthy communities through laughter & cooking has brought him to Alaska, Mexico, and everywhere in between. A frequent speaker on television shows & at universities, the Associated Press called his show ‘a globally flavored recipe that packs some punch lines.’

Al & Lalo: Ted Cruzin’ Around

Comedian Al Madrigal and cartoonist Lalo Alcaraz discuss Senator Ted Cruz, drivers’ licenses for undocumented migrants, and more.

Photo courtesy of Patrick Feller




MADRIGAL-300x168A correspondent on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” since 2011, Al Madrigal has been named Best Stand-Up Comedian by the HBO/U.S. Comedy Arts Festival and his material dubbed “dynamic” by The New York Times. His unique, spontaneous and fast-paced lyrical storytelling style has made him a regular on television with numerous appearances on Comedy Central including his own half-hour Comedy Central Presents Special.

Lalo_hs-150x150Lalo Alcaraz is the creator of the first nationally-syndicated, politically-themed Latino daily comic strip,“La Cucaracha,” seen in scores of newspapers including the Los Angeles Times. He is also co-host of KPFK Radio’s popular satirical talk show, “The Pocho Hour of Power,” and co-founded the political satire comedy group Chicano Secret Service. His work has appeared in major publications around the world and he has won numerous awards and honors. Alcaraz received his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University, and earned his master’s degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently a faculty member at Otis College of Art & Design in Los Angeles. Alcaraz was born in San Diego and grew up on the border.

Maria’s First Futbol Game

Maria Hinojosa broadens her horizons, and visits her very first soccer game with producer A.C. Valdez and Latino USA sports contributor Cesar Diaz.

Image courtesy of Flickr.


C1_Cesar Diaz PicCesar Diaz is the Editor-in-Chief for & With his family DNA scattered throughout Latin America, he’s never paid for lodging. His tools consist of Cafe Bustelo, Pen, Pad, Humor, Patience, Cantinflas/Chapulin Colorado films and his trusty laptop, Rocinante. Easily approachable, follow him at @CesarDiazNYC or simply email him at




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