Episodes Highlight Events and Cases in the Struggle for Civil Rights to Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month
As part of the celebrations for Hispanic Heritage Month, today the Library of Congress launched Season 2 of La Biblioteca podcast, a six-part series titled Exploring Latinx Civil Rights in the United States, which zeros in on seminal civil rights cases and events.
The English-language series derives from A Latinx Resource Guide: Civil Rights Cases and Events in the United States, created by Hermán Luis Chávez and María Guadalupe (Lupita) Partida, two Huntington Fellows in the Library’s Hispanic Reading Room. The guide offers an overview of 20th and 21st century American court cases, legislation and events that have affected the Hispanic community across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico.
“I am excited by the diversity of voices and topics in this season of La Biblioteca. I learned quite a bit, and I know our listeners will come away feeling better informed,” said Suzanne Schadl, chief of the Latin American, Caribbean and European Division at the Library of Congress.
Season 2 evolves out of the resource guide — among the most viewed in the Library — and speaks with lawyers, community organizers and legislators about Latino cultural identity and history in the United States. Latinx is gender-neutral term meant to include a diversity of identifications used to describe over 62 million people in the United States who are of or relate to Latin American origin or descent.
The first episode centers on Madrigal v. Quilligan, a 1978 federal class action lawsuit filed by 10 Mexican American women against the Los Angeles County-University of Southern California Medical Center for involuntary or forced sterilization. Although the plaintiffs lost the case in an unpublished decision from a California federal district court, the California Department of Health established new sterilization procedures and bilingual protocols for better informed consent for patients. Hermán and Lupita discuss the case and its impact with lawyer Antonia Hernández, who managed the case while working for Model Cities Center for Law and Justice.
Running through Nov. 2, subsequent weekly podcasts will discuss the fate of Central American immigrants who’ve entered the country illegally and the Temporary Protection Status, an immigration program enacted by Congress in 1990; the “Latinx” identity; Latino voter engagement; Latino student activism, and environmental activism in Puerto Rico. Guests include members of Congress, immigrant advocates, a bilingual journalist and academic experts.
La Biblioteca Podcast launched in 2017 to explore the Library’s collections. The first season, Exploring the PALABRA Archive, featured lively discussions with academic experts, poets and critics about a selection of recordings from the PALABRA Archive.
In addition to the Season 2 podcast, the Library joins Hispanic Heritage Month celebrations with a release of 50 new recordings from authors featured in the PALABRA Archive, including Mexican writer Elena Poniatowska and Cuban-American author, poet and anthropologist Ruth Behar. There will also be a Zoom webinar on Oct. 11 with Latin American children and young adult authors Angela Burke Kunkel, Aida Salazar and Yamile Saied Méndez.
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