“Under the moonlight I set my tripod up just outside the tent, and at around 1:30 a.m. we awoke to the rumbling of the ground and the sound of a breath-stealing explosion. I scrambled to the camera just in time to capture a moonlit and lava-covered Fuego as it put on this beautiful display of activity and power,“ said Andrew Shepard, who captured this amazing view of the highly active Acatenango Volcano in Guatemala.

#hispanicgirlsunited because..

• Hispanic women were made fun of forever for having a lot of hair (facial hair especially) but now ‘bold brows’ are the new thing

• Our traditional garb is now called a peasant top by stores targeted for rich, white girls

• People automatically assume my mother cleans houses and my father picks oranges

• I’m not allowed to move out of the house until I’m married but my male cousin is free to leave home when he pleases

• We’ve been fetishized objects instead of the strong women we are

• When I tell people I hate cooking and cleaning, they ask me what Im supposed to do when I get a husband

• Our culture is appropriated constantly and no one realizes but us

• White people want us “Out of their country” when without us they wouldn’t have: orange juice in the morning, people to clean their houses, people building their houses, someone to mow their lawn, tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and basically someone doing all the shitty jobs no one else wants to do for shitty wages ( also we’re badly stereotyped for doing/making/eating these things)

• Someone’s literally told me “You’re pretty for a Latin girl”

• If I don’t know how to say a word in Spanish people say “Aren’t you supposed to be bilingual?”

• People are SO impressed by the fact that I get good grades

• I’m too Mexican to listen to Nirvana and Fleetwood Mac, but too White to listen to Selena and Pedro Infante

• Our problems are completely ignored in the media

• When I say my opinion I’m suddenly the voice of my race

• People can’t grasp the idea that Hispanics don’t just come from Mexico

• When there’s people at my school doing the flowers, trees, etc. people say “oh look there’s you’re family”

• Our beauty standards are women who have light skin, hair, and eyes when the majority of us have darker everything

• I can’t eat a taco at school without people saying “Of course you’d eat that!”

• People are surprised I’m not super loud and social

• When I translate for my friends and family people make faces at me

• Whenever I get angry people blame it on me being Hispanic

• Places like Panajachel and Antigua have been taken over by white hippies

• If I’m arguing with someone their first comeback is “I’ll deport you”

• Boys have come up to my friends and said “Hey mami” or “Call me papi”

• We’re represented far less than most minorities and when we are in the media we’re portrayed as sexy, curvy, and always promiscuous

• Most of us have relatives, neighbors, or friends that have been deported and we miss them dearly but we can’t tell anyone because they’ll think we’re undocumented as well

• Cinco De Mayo = Drinking holiday Memorial Day = important holiday

• We come here to work hard and we’re perceived as lazy wetbacks

• I can’t say gringo but anyone can tell me to go back to my country

• People don’t realize America wouldn’t be shit without us and other minorities :))

I haven’t looked through these yet, but in case any of you are interested too, I had an instructor of mine just send me a list of resources relating to Central America (particularly the civil war/post-war era from my understanding?) and I thought I’d pass them along:

Immigration and Neoliberal Politics:

  1. Bacon, David. Illegal People: How Globalization creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants. Boston: Beacon Press, 2008.
  2. Grandin, Greg. Empire’s Workshop: Latin America, the United States and the Rise of the New Imperialism. New York: Metropolitan Books, 2006

Guatemalan History:

  1. Grandin, Greg. The Last Colonial Massacre: Latin America in the Cold War. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004.
  2. Shattered Hope.
  3. Bitter Fruit: The Story of the American Coup in Guatemala
  4. Grandin, Greg. The Blood of Guatemala: A History of Race and Nation. Durham: Duke University Press, 2000.

Peasant and Indigenous Movements:

  1. Gould, Jeffrey. To Lead as Equals: Rural Protest and Political Consciousness in Chinandega, Nicaragua, 1912-1979.
  2. To Die in this Way: Nicaraguan Indians and the Myth of Mestizaje, 1880-1965
  3. To Rise in Darkness: Revolution, Repression, and Memory in El Salvador, 1920-1934

U.S. Intervention in Central America:

  1. The Banana Wars: United States Intervention in the Caribbean, 1898–1934
  2. Nicaragua: Living in the Shadow of the Eagle
  3. Nicaragua: Reconciliation Awaiting Recovery; Politics, the Economy and U.S. Aid Under the Chamorro Government

Social Movements (El Salvador):

  1. Almeida, Paul D. Waves of Protest: Popular Struggle in El Salvador, 1925-2005. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2008.
  2. Ching, Eric and Hector Lindo-Fuentes. Modernizing Minds in El Salvador: Education Reform and the Cold War. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2012.
  3. Ellacuría. Ignacio. Veinte años de historia en El Salvador (1969-1989): escritos políticos. San Salvador: UCA Editores, 1991.

Women’s Organizing:

  1. González, Victoria and Karen Kampwirth, ed. Radical Women in Latin America: Left and Right. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2001.
  2. Guillem, Josefa Viegas. Historias de mujeres, mujeres de historia en El Salvador. San Salvador: Dirección Nacional de Investigaciones en Cultura y Arte, 2013
  3. Guzmán, Gloria, and Iranztu Mendía. Mujeres con Memoria: Activistas del movimiento de Derechos Humanos en El Salvador. Bilbao: Hegoa, 2013.
  4. Herrera, Morena Soledad, ed. Movimiento de mujeres en El Salvador 1995-2006. Estrategias y miradas desde el feminismo.  San Salvador: Fundación Nacional para el Desarrollo, 2008.
  5. Jaquette, Jane S. ed., The Women’s Movement in Latin America: Participation and Democracy. Boulder: Westview Press, 1994.
  6. Kampwirth, Karen. Feminism and the Legacy of Revolution: Nicaragua, El Salvador, Chiapas. Athens: Center for International Studies at Ohio University, 2004.
  7. Kampwirth, Karen. Women and Guerrilla Movements: Nicaragua, El Salvador, Chiapas and Cuba. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2002.
  8. Viterna, Jocelyn. Women and War: Micro-Processes of Mobilization in El Salvador. New York: Oxford University Press, 2013.
  9. Molyneux, Maxine. “Mobilization without Emancipation? Women’s Interests, The State, and Revolution in Nicaragua.” Feminist Studies 11 (1985): 227-254.
  10. Molyneux, Maxine Elizabeth Dore, ed. Hidden Histories of Gender and the State in Latin America. Durham: Duke University Press, 2000.
  11. Montaya, Rosario. Gendered Scenarios of Revolution. Making New Men and New Women in Nicaragua, 1975-2000. Tucson: The University of Arizona Press, 2002
  12. Navas Turcios, María Candelaria. Movimiento de mujeres en El Salvador (1986-2008). Desde su invisibilidad histórica y política hasta la incorporación de la perspectiva de género. México: Unknown Publisher, 2013.
  13. Navas, María Candelaria. Sufragismo y Feminismo. Visibilizando el Protagonismo de las Mujeres Salvadoreñas. San Salvador: Consejo de Investigaciones Científicas, Universidad de El Salvador, 2012.
  14. Navas Turcios, María Candelaria. Movimiento de mujeres en El Salvador (1986-2008). Desde su invisibilidad histórica y política hasta la incorporación de la perspectiva de género. México: Unknown Publisher, 2013.
  15. Pearce, Jenny. Promised Land: Peasant Rebellion in Chalatenango, El Salvador.  London: Latin America Bureau, 1986.
  16. Randall, Margaret. Gathering rage: the failure of twentieth century revolutions to develop a feminist agenda. Monthly Review Press: New York, 1992.
  17. Rodríguez Urrutia, Daniel Ezequiel. Evaluación sociológica del movimiento magisterial salvadoreño durante las décadas 1960-1980 y sus perspectivas: enfoque socio-político. San Salvador, Unknown Publisher, 1992.
  18. Shayne, Julia Denise. “Women in the Salvadoran Resistance Movement (1979-1992).” Latin American Perspectives 26 (1999): 85-102.
  19. Silva Orellana, Ana Patricia. Mujeres militantes del FMLN: empoderamiento, participación y resiliencia, a diez años de la firma de los Acuerdos de Paz en El Salvador. San Salvador: Unknown Publisher, 200

Testimonies (El Salvador)

  1. Drago, Margarita Juana M. Ramos, eds. Tomamos la palabra: Mujeres en la guerra civil de El Salvador (1980-1992). Unpublished manuscript, 2014.
  2. Gorkin, Michael Marta Pineda, and Gloria Leal. From Grandmother to Granddaughter: Salvadoran Women’s Stories. Berkley: University of California Press, 2000.
  3. McCkraken, Lyn and Theodor Simon. Mujeres de la guerra: Historias de El Salvador. San Salvador, 2007.
  4. Murguiaiday, Clara, Mercedes Olivera and Norma Vásquez, eds. Yia Montaña. Testimonios de guerrilleras y colaboradoras del FMLN. Mujeres por la Dignidad y la Vida (Las Dignas): San Salvador, 1997.
  5. Rivera, Ana Kelly, Edy Areli Ortiz Canas, Liza Domínguez Magaña, and María Candelaria Navas, eds. ¿Valió la Pena? Testimonios de salvadoreñas que vivieron la Guerra. Editorial Sombrero Azul: San Salvador, 1995
  6. Stephen, Lynn, ed. Hear My Testimony: Maria Teresa Tula, Human Rights Activists of El Salvador. Boston: South End Press, 1994.
  7. Murguiaiday, Clara, ed. Montañas con recuerdos de mujer: una mirada feminista a la participación de las mujeres en los conflictos armados en Centroamérica y Chiapas. Mujeres por la Dignidad y la Vida (Las Dignas): San Salvador, 1996.
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JULY 1 - RIGOBERTA MENCHÚ

Born into a poor indigenous family of K'iche’ descent, activist Rigoberta Menchú is known for promoting the rights of indigenous peoples both during and after the Guatemalan Civil War. She is the subject of the controversial 1983 testimonial biography I, Rigoberta Menchú by Elizabeth Burgos, and later in 1998, she published a second installment with her own autobiography Crossing Borders.

For her work, Menchú was the recipient of a Nobel Peace Prize in 1992, as well as a Prince of Asturias Award in 1998. She became the first indigenous woman to compete for the Guatemalan presidency in 2007, and though she was defeated in the first round, that didn’t stop her from running once again in 2011.

Lincoln’s Web-Footed Salamander - Bolitoglossa lincolni

Bolitoglossa lincolni (Plethodontidae) is a stout salamander with a bright coral red coloration on the back, tail, and dorsal surfaces of limbs, and sometimes the fingers and toes. It is known from the central plateau of Chiapas, Mexico, and mountainous areas of western Guatemala. It lives in low vegetation (probably including mosses), under bark, and in bromeliads, with a broad enough habitat that its populations are not declining. However, due to destruction of habitat, the species is listed as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List.

Bolitoglossa species are able to propel themselves forward by an “explosive tail flip” that carries them off the vegetation – a protective device when in danger during its daylight resting hours. Another protective behavior is to raise its tail as an offering to a predator. If the tail is grabbed, the salamander can disarticulate and run off, leaving the predator with only the tail.

Reference: [1] - [2] - [3]

Photo credit: ©Todd Pierson (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0) | Locality: Cuchumatanes, Guatemala (2011)

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XV Marcha LGTBI en Guatemala

Este sábado 27 de junio se realizó la marcha LGTBI acá en Guatemala. Es un desfile muy colorido. Este año llego a sus 15 años de salir a las calles a decir, existimos, sentimos y no nos vamos, a pesar de tener muchas opiniones en contra. 

Considero a mi país machista, y que se lleve a cabo un desfile como este es verdaderamente un logro de admirar, estoy seguro que sirve para crear conciencia y demostrar que no se es un monstruo sino un ser humano al que atacamos cuando discriminamos.

¡Que viva la libertad de amar a quien se nos de la regalada gana!

This Fabric Market in Guatemala is full of second-hand and used traditional Mayan pieces. Colorful huipiles [blouses], cortes [skirts], fajas [belts] + more are displayed from villages all around Guatemala! At hiptipico.com we have curated an online collection [many pieces on sale now] and also take custom orders. When you browse our site, you can learn some more about each individual piece! ✨ #travel #guatemala #latergram #ethialfashion #vintagefashion #culture #travelblogger #textiles #globalmarket (at Lago Atitlan, Panajachel)

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#HispanicGirlsUnited

Because when they see someone like me, all they can associate with my culture is “tacos”

Because my main language is not English nor Spanish, but a mixture of both

Because I started getting cat called at an early age because of my body development

Because I am the first born, so I had to abandon my childhood and mature at a fast pace to help my parents raise my siblings

Because my parents work hard enough to support both their families here and the ones left behind in their home country

Because I am automatically categorized as Mexican

Because my mom left her home at the age of 16, already thinking about her children’s better future

Because my dad almost died on his way to “El Norte” and then slept in parks when he did finally get here

Because everyday I am reminded by my parents to stride against social barriers and achieve everything they couldn’t

Because my parents gave up their dreams to help me make mine a reality