Latin American & Hispanic Heritage Month (LAHHM), recognized annually from September 15 through October 15, is the official celebration honoring the history, cultural diversity, and unique contributions of individuals and communities whose ancestry can be traced back to Spain, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. Read more about Vanderbilt’s celebration and events here and watch the videos below for more perspectives.
Why Do We Say “Latino”? by Danielle Bainbridge: This PBS channel Origin Of Everything short video delves deep into the history and meaning of the word Latino and the variations that stem from the word. Hispanic was the first term used to describe people originating from Spanish-speaking countries, but has deep references to colonial Spain. Latin America was first used in the 1850s, but Latino is a somewhat controversial term for a wide collection of people from across the continent.
Alisa Valdes Rodriguez’s The Latino Myth: Rodriguez discusses what it’s like to be Latina in the U.S. In this TEDx talk, she explains how there are over 55 million people who identify as Latino in the States and how the community is not monolithic in their culture, food, history, appearance, or music.