07 julio 2010


Over the course of the Independence Day weekend, I started thinking about how my good friend has at various points comments on my hispanidad. At points it seems that people assume that pride in one's background is in direct conflict with any positive feelings one might have while being from or living in the States. It's true that while living in the Mid-West my feelings of pride grew as a result of the animosity my mother faced, but I think it's also true that in developing close bonds with people from all over the Americas - and all over the world, really - that I would really appreciate feelings of community in the States. I had to word that careful & emphasize community, because to say that I learned to appreciate living in the US might give one the impression that I was making a comment about the quality of life in my friends' countries, which is just not the case. In fact, most of my friends from Spain seemed to very much love their area of origin & looked to return when finished with graduate school or their post-doc.

But what does stand out to me - especially when we talk about the Americas - is that we each have the experience of living in post-colonial nations. The notion of independence is so important here, & that really stood out to me whenever I hear about Bolivar. It's a bond that the north & the south share that I wish would come to the mind of those who think so negatively about our Latin American neighbours, because if our ancestors have fought for anything it was for the right to be represented. This sounds corny, I know, but even countries that have an imperial history have had something to celebrate. My mind goes immediately to Spain's civil war for a republic (yes, the republicans lost), to the French Revolution...

I've done a lot of incoherent rambling, I know. My point is that being Latina doesn't make me dislike being an American - if anything, I'm more interested in reading about the history of the US & the history of other countries.

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