30 Prominent Afro-Latinas You Should Know


Afro-Cuban Singer & “Queen of Salsa” Celia Cruz 

 “I am black; I am in total fusion with the world; I am truly a drop of sun under the earth,” philosopher-revolutionary Frantz Fanon wrote triumphantly, exulting in the beauty and intricacies of blackness. It is easy to forget that to be black is to beautifully complex.
That said; as we observe Black History Month we would like to take time to honor Afro-Latinas, who proudly occupy the intersection of blackness and latinidad, by sharing a list of prominent Afro-Latina scholars, athletes, politicians, and artists with you. To learn more about Afro-Latino identity check out this short documentary with Laz Alonzo, Christina Milian, and Mimi Valdes here.


Singer, “Queen of Latin Soul”  (Afro-Cuban)

“A rebel and innovator, pop singer [Victoria Yoli Raymond], otherwise known as La Lupe or La Yiyiyi, was renowned for her emotional performance style. Her renditions of classics such as “My Way,” “Fever” and “Going Out of My Head” were famous worldwide. But the legendary Cuban-born star was also a single mother of two, a survivor of domestic abuse and a Santeria who later became an evangelist Christian speaker.” Text by Lisa Ko & Independent Lens (PBS)


Percussionist and Drummer (Mexican and Creole)

“Sheila Escovedo picked up the drumsticks and started making music at the … age of three, while watching her legendary father, percussionist Pete Escovedo rehearse. Best known to music fans as Sheila E., she became a top session and touring musician before the age of 20, performing and recording with George Duke, Herbie Hancock, Billy Cobham and countless others. In the 1980s, Prince helped catapult her to pop stardom. In recent years, she has served as musical director for the likes of Jennifer Lopez, Beyonce Knowles, and Prince.” Text by Triche Entertainment Enterprise


News Anchor and Journalist (Afro-Cuban & Caucasian)

“Maria de la Soledad Teresa O’Brien is an anchor and special correspondent for CNN/U.S. O’Brien joined CNN in July 2003 as the co-anchor of the network’s flagship morning program, American Morning, and distinguished herself by reporting from the scene on the transformational stories that broke on her watch, including Hurricane Katrina and the tsunami in Southeast Asia. She is a graduate of Harvard University.” Text by The Huffington Post


Doctor, Teacher, Activist (Afro-Dominican)

“Dr. Andrea Evangelina Rodriguez Perozo became the first woman to receive a medical degree in the Dominican Republic after graduating from the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo in 1911. In 1920,  she pursued specialization in obstetrics and gynecology in Paris. Upon her return to the Dominican Republic, she dedicated her career to giving medical attention to poor communities in the south of the country. [She protested] against the human rights crimes committed under dictator Rafael Trujillo’s regime.” Text from CrayonBoxes.tumblr.com


Renaissance Woman (Afro-Peruvian)

“Monica Carillo is an Afro-Peruvian hip-hop activist, writer, poet, singer, musician, community leader, journalist, human rights advocate, feminist and educator, working to empower her community, especially working with younger generations of Peruvian … that live under poverty. Carrillo, who goes by the name Oru, creates music that mixes poetry, Afro-beat, soul, hip-hop and Afro-Peruvian music to illuminate the contributions made by those of African descent living in Peru, to bring attention to the ongoing effects of racism and sexism and as a form of self-expression.” Text by the Fresh, Bold, and So Def Research Project …

Read More: http://www.forharriet.com/2013/02/to-be-young-gifted-afro-latina-30-afro.html

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