African roots in the u s latino and latina tree jan rog english 152
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African Roots in the U.S. Latino and Latina Tree Jan Rog / English 152 PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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African Roots in the U.S. Latino and Latina Tree Jan Rog / English 152. African Influences on U.S. Latino and Latina Literature. per·spec·tive    noun A view or vista.

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African Roots in the U.S. Latino and Latina Tree Jan Rog / English 152

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African Roots in the U.S. Latino and Latina TreeJan Rog / English 152

  • African Influences on U.S. Latino and Latina Literature

  • per·spec·tive    noun

    • A view or vista.

    • A mental view or outlook: “It is useful occasionally to look at the past to gain a perspective on the present” (Fabian Linden).

  • The appearance of objects in depth as perceived by normal binocular vision.

    • The relationship of aspects of a subject to each other and to a whole: a perspective of history; a need to view the problem in the proper perspective.

    • Subjective evaluation of relative significance; a point of view: the perspective of the displaced homemaker.

    • The ability to perceive things in their actual interrelations or comparative importance: tried to keep my perspective throughout the crisis.

  • Discuss in groups.

  • What does it mean to be Latino or Latina?

  • What cultures are the roots of Latinos and Latinas today?

  • Why is it important to search for one’s roots?

  • Indigenous peoples of the Americas

  • Spanish and Portuguese explorers, priests, soldiers, and colonists.

  • Africans

    • Slaves from the TransAtlantic Trade

    • Africans from Spain (with influence on Spanish culture)

  • Lessons about life, family, and identity, passed down from generation to generation

  • Lessons about creation and the workings of the cosmos passed down through the generations

  • Often becoming a reality to many

  • Oral traditions

    • “speakers” or priests

    • historical lessons

    • prognoses

    • oracles

    • riddles

    • cosmogony

  • Legends

  • human narratives

  • ties to nature

  • enduring truths

  • faith and actions

  • qualities of the people

  • all possibilities are possible

Influences in MestizaCulture

  • Indigenous, Spanish, and African oral traditions occurred in the Mestiza culture

    • Legends, psalms, biblical accounts, troubadour ballads from Spain

    • Poems, myths, historical narrative, and cosmic revelations from indigenous peoples

Magic in Tales

  • Shape Shifting

  • Time Travel

  • Mind over Matter / Mind with Matter

  • Communing with the Dead

  • Creating a New Reality

  • Distinguishing Enemies

  • Seeking Help

  • Rewarding Friends

Select one story and read!

  • Quetzalcoatl

  • Aztlan

  • Our Lady of Guadalupe

  • La Llorona

  • Chac Mool

  • The Jaguar

  • Select an African tale and read!

    • Quarcoo Bah-Bohni (The Bad Boy)

    • Anansi and the Blind Fisherman

    • N’Gor Niebe

    • Which did you choose? Read it and determine how it compares to your Mexican tale.

Song and Dance

  • Song and Dance / Indigenous, Spanish, and African Influences

    • Symbolic Representation

    • Relating History, Social Lessons, Events

  • Often in the oral tradition

    • Ballads (Las Baladas)

    • Couplets (Las Coplas)

    • Legends (Los Cuentos, Las Leyendas )


  • Addresses issues without requiring literacy

  • Informs, educates, and inspires action

  • Current as well as historical

  • Non-threatening, but is it?

  • Presents the uncommon perspective

  • Can we re-examine our histories to find there are more influences than we first thought?

  • Can we take a traditional interpretation and begin to consider it in a new light?

  • Can we be comfortable with a new understanding of the past?


  • Traditionally, Malinche has been seen as a traitor who consorted with Hernan Cortez.

  • Research has uncovered. . . .

    • Enabled Cortez to negotiate rather than slaughter

    • Communicated and facilitated peaceful/ less violent transition

    • Spoke out against cannibalism and human sacrifice

    • Was the daughter of a noble Aztec family; passed over for a male heir; ended up as a slave

La Llorona: Reflection with Water

  • Recast the story:

  • murderess - ->

  • sorrowful - ->

  • vain - ->

  • vengeful - ->

  • weak - ->

  • victim - ->

  • misunderstood - ->

  • abandoned - ->

What does it mean to recast our stories?

  • Consider how Sandra Cisneros recast La Llorona and created the strong women of Woman Hollering Creek.

  • What does it mean if we recast our own stories? Can we allow new roots to be added to our current roots?

  • What do you think?

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