¡BIENVENIDO! WELCOME TO THE HISPANIC AND LATINO AMERICANS PORTAL
Hispanic and Latino Americans are an ethnolinguistic group of Americans with origins in the countries of Latin America or the Iberian peninsula. More generally it includes all persons in the United States who self-identify as Hispanic or Latino. Reflecting especially the Latin American population, which has origins in all the continents and many ancestries, Hispanic/Latino Americans are very racially diverse, and as a result form an ethnic category, rather than a race.
While the two terms are sometimes used interchangeably, Hispanic is a narrower term and refers mostly to persons of Spanish speaking origin or ancestry, while Latino is more frequently used to refer more generally to anyone of Latin American origin or ancestry, including Brazilians. Hispanic thus includes persons from Spain and Spanish speaking Latin Americans excluding both Portuguese and Brazilians (who speak Portuguese) while Latino excludes persons from Spain but includes both Spanish speaking and Portuguese-speaking Latin Americans. Persons from Portugal, and all other Portuguese-speaking peoples around the World outside the Americas (e.g. Cape Verdeans or Angolans), are neither Hipanic nor Latino. Latino is a broader term encompassing more people. The choice between the terms Latino and Hispanic among those of Spanish speaking origin is also associated with location: persons of Spanish speaking origins residing in the eastern United States tend to prefer the term Hispanic, whereas those in the West tend to prefer Latino.
Day of the Dead
: Día de Muertos
) is a Mexican
holiday observed throughout Mexico and around the world in other cultures. The holiday focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died. The celebration takes place on October 31, November 1 and November 2, in connection with the triduum of Hallowtide
: All Hallows' Eve
, and All Souls' Day
In many American communities with Mexican residents Day of the Dead celebrations are very similar to those held in Mexico. In some of these communities such as in Texas the celebrations tend to be mostly traditional. For example, the All Souls Procession has been an annual Tucson event since 1990. The event combines elements of traditional Day of the Dead celebrations with those of pagan harvest festivals. People wearing masks carry signs honoring the dead and an urn in which people can place slips of paper with prayers on them to be burned. Likewise, Old Town San Diego, California annually hosts a very traditional two-day celebration culminating in a candlelight procession to the historic El Campo Santo Cemetery. (more...)
Did you know...
- ...that Hispanics have participated in every conflict in which the United States has been involved, and over forty Hispanics have been awarded the Medal of Honor?
- ...that American sculptor Luis Jiménez, known for his large Southwestern and Hispanic polychromed fiberglass sculptures, was killed when a large piece of his work fell on him?
- ... that Sal Castro (pictured) was the teacher that inspired Mexican American students to protest unequal conditions in Los Angeles Unified School District schools, resulting in the 1968 East L.A. walkouts?
- ... that having served as both Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff to President Bill Clinton, Maria Echaveste is one of the highest-ranking Latinas to have served in a Presidential Administration?
- ... that the Chicana artist Yolanda Lopez became famous with the painting "Virgen de Guadalupe", which represents Lopez's personal investigation into Virgen de Guadalupe's status in Mexican society?
- ... that although the parents of Juan Bautista Rael, a Stanford University professor and folklorist, sent him away for schooling due to limited educational options in their town, he focused his academic career on the folk plays and religious songs of that region?
- ... that Estela Ruiz claims to have seen and spoken with the Blessed Virgin Mary in South Phoenix, Arizona continually from 1988 to 1998?
- ... that the East Los Angeles community arts center Self Help Graphics & Art has been producing Chicano art for more than thirty years?
- ... that Teatro Campesino or "farmworkers theater" began performing in 1965 on flat bed trucks in the fields with the United Farm Workers in Delano, California and still puts on performances today?
is an alleged Marian visionary
in Phoenix, Arizona
On the night of December 3, 1988, Ruiz, Reyes, their son Fernando, and Fernando's wife Leticia, who was pregnant with their fourth child, were all praying the Rosary. Ruiz in particular was praying for her son Reyes Jr., who was struggling with cocaine addiction and for Fernando and Leticia's marriage. During the final decade, Ruiz says she saw a light emanating from a portrait of the Immaculate Heart of Mary that grew brighter until it forced her to close her eyes. At that moment, the Virgin spoke to her: "Don't you know that I am going to take care of your children?" Ruiz was overcome with emotion and began to cry, calling out, "Qué linda! Qué linda!" ("She's beautiful! She's beautiful!") (more...)
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Hispanic and Latino American Topics