Latino Issues Conference to examine overlap of U.S., Latino cultures

The overlap of U.S. society and regional Latino food and cultures will be in the spotlight Thursday (April 27) when BGSU hosts the 12th annual Latino Issues Conference. This year’s theme is “Meeting at the Intersection of Market, Politics and Other Cultural Practices.”

Open to everyone, the free conference will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Lenhart Grand Ballroom of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. Toledo Councilwoman Taylor Balderas, a BGSU alumna, will give opening remarks at 9 a.m. The program will feature BGSU students and faculty, plus guest speakers from around the nation.

Dr. Arlene Dávila
Dr. Arlene Dávila
Dr. Arlene Dávila, an associate professor of anthropology and American studies at New York University, will deliver the keynote address, “Latinos, Inc.: Marketing and the Making of a People,” at 12:30 p.m.

A cultural anthropologist interested in popular culture, media, cities and urban culture, Dávila has studied Puerto Ricans in the East and Latinos nationwide. She is now examining the mainstreaming of U.S. Latinos.

The morning’s events will include two sessions. The first, “Between Grassroots Politics, Film and Dominican Food,” from 9:10-10:20 a.m., will include Dr. Marc Becker of Truman State University in Missouri speaking on the “Indigenous Movement in Ecuador” and Gerardo Cummings, romance languages, on “The Importation of Third World Talent to Hollywood: A Look at the Entertainment Industry from a Latin American Perspective.”

“Between Traveling, Migration and Cuban Food,” from 10:30-11:45 a.m., will feature Dr. José Buscaglia, from the State University of New York at Buffalo, speaking on “Catch Me if You Can: The Story of the First Puerto Rican to Lay Claim to the World,” and Dr. Azfar Hussain, ethnic studies, on “The Political Economy of Migration: The Case of Puerto Ricans and Cubans in the United States.” BGSU student Rachel Kizer will give “A Portrait of Cuban Food.”

Afternoon session topics will be “Between Black Skins, Science and Argentinean Food,” from 1:45-2:50 p.m., featuring Dr. Jesse Hingson of Georgia State College and University on “Making the Invisible Visible: Studies on Africans in Mexico and Argentina,” and Diorka Hernández of the Xerox Corp. speaking on “The Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers: Creating Communities among Latinos in the Technical Field.” BGSU student Clarissa Steele will present “A Portrait of Argentinean Food.”

The day’s final session, “Between Gender, Race and Hope,” will be held from 3-4:15 p.m. Poet Tatiana de la Tierra, from SUNY-Buffalo, will present “Paint Me a Dangerous Mujer,” and Dr. Luis González of Indiana University will speak on “Abolition in Brazilian Social Memory.” Carlos Adams, ethnic studies, will discuss “Machismo and Geographies of Hope.”

A buffet lunch of Cuban, Dominican and Argentinean cuisine will be served from noon-12:30 p.m. in the ballroom for $10 (bursarable by calling 2-2642 for tickets). During the luncheon, the BGSU Human Relations Commission will announce the recipient of the 2006 Dr. Miguel Ornelas Human Relations Award.

For more information, call the Center for Multicultural & Academic Initiatives at 2-2642.
April 24, 2006