Latino Americans, the new six-hour PBS television series featuring interviews with more than one hundred Latinos covering half a millennium of history, will debut September 17, but a forty-minute preview will be screened Wednesday at the Wittliff Collections at Texas State University.
Complementing the screening will be a panel discussion including John Valadez, one of the documentary’s producers, and a couple of university academics, led by Dr . Jesús Francisco de la Teja, the professor and history department chairman, who in 2007 was appointed the first ever Texas state historian. They will cover the rise of Latinos largely within the context of Texas history.
The topics will include Juan Seguín’s story of the Alamo, crossing the border at El Paso during the Mexican Revolution, the Longoria Affair, and Willie Velásquez’s Southwest Voter Registration Education Project. “The story of Latinos is an opportunity to grapple with the issues of past and present discrimination, to understand the past and present role of Latinos in our broader communities, and to appreciate the growing diversity of those experiences as we transition from being almost uniformly Mexican American to multiculturally Latino,” de la Teja wrote in an email.
The Wittliff Collections, September 11, 6 p.m., thewittliffcollections.txstate.edu
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