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Logan Library

Off the Shelf: OFF THE SHELF: Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month

OFF THE SHELF: Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month

Logan Library's Staycation

¡Bienvenido! Welcome!

It is National Hispanic/Latinx Heritage Month

Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.

The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. It was enacted into law on August 17, 1988, on the approval of Public Law 100-402. Text credit:

Stop by Logan Library and check out the new exhibit that includes Hispanic/Latinx culture, history, art and music. The exhibit will be up September 15th through October 15th coinciding with the national observation.

Julia de Burgos: Cultural Crossing and Iconicity

Flyer for poetry reading by Julia de Burgos, 10 May 1940. Pura Belpré Papers. Archives of the Puerto Rican Diaspora, Center for Puerto Rican Studies, Hunter College, CUNY.

The poet Julia Constanza Burgos Garcia was born in Carolina, Puerto Rico, and grew up in the barrio of Santa Cruz. 

Predating the Nuyorican poetry movement, de Burgos’ poems engage themes of feminism and social justice. In a 2011 profile of de Burgos for Ms. Magazine’s blog, Vanessa Perez Rosario states, “De Burgos was an ambitious and brilliant woman who worked diligently on two fronts—to establish herself as a writer of international acclaim and to eradicate injustice. Her feminist politics and her Afro-Caribbean ideas allow us to read her as a precursor to contemporary U.S. Latina/o writers.” Poetry Foundation

Selena: Crossing Over Cultural Boundaries

"Selena: Crossing Over Cultural Boundaries | Verónica A. Mendez and Mireya Loza," part of the Latinas Talk Latinas video series. A collaboration between the National Museum of American History and the Smithsonian Latino Center, the series explores the stories of 10 Latinas as told by curators, scientists, and educators across the Smithsonian.

Zoot Suit Riots

The zoot suit was a popular style of dress among nonwhite youths during WWII. With ballooned pants that tapered at the ankle, oversized jackets, and a broad-rimmed hat, zoot suits were a way for these marginalized groups to express autonomy. Mainstream society, however, viewed zoot culture as rebellious and aggressive.

In June of 1943, violence escalated in Los Angeles when white servicemen scoured the city attacking zoot suiters. The targets were predominately Mexican Americans, but African Americans and Filipino Americans were also attacked. For several days, servicemen dragged nonwhite youths into the streets where they beat them and stripped them of their zoot suits. The Zoot Suit Riots lasted for days and sparked racial violence across homefront America.

To learn more about the Zoot Suit Riots stop by the library to see the physical exhibit or check out the digital exhibit ZOOT SUIT RIOTS 1943 from the National Archives.

A Fusion of Culture and Identity: Joe Bataan’s Latin Boogaloo Music

Smithsonian Podcast: PORTRAITS

We look at a black and white photograph that encapsulates a very American story— about the magic that can happen when you throw together people from different backgrounds and languages and beats. The concoction that resulted is known as Latin Boogaloo.

Eduardo Díaz, director of the Smithsonian Latino Center, explains how one of the genre’s pioneers, Joe Bataan, got his degree in ‘streetology’ and went on to establish himself as the King of Latin Soul.