A Shared Heritage: Afro-Latin@s and Black History

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Afro-Latino, Black history, African diaspora, American history, Latin America

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As the Latin@ population continues to grow in the United States, it is imperative that social studies teachers are aware of the rich history and sociocultural complexities of Latin@ identity. In particular, there is a large population of Latin@s of African descent throughout Latin America, the Caribbean, and North America. However, Afro-Latin@s typically go unrecognized in the media and, concomitantly, the social studies curriculum. Portrayals of Latin@s are often inaccurate or stereotypical, advancing the idea that most Latin@s are solely of European or indigenous descent. The authors call for the inclusion of Afro-Latin@s in historical narratives as well as portrayals of Latin@s in social studies curricula. Understanding and incorporating the historical and societal complexities and contributions of Afro-Latin@s are crucial to establishing a conceptual understanding of Black history as it exists within, and extends beyond, the borders of the United States. In this article a brief history of Afro-Latin@s is presented, along with attendant challenges and possibilities for the social studies curriculum. Appropriate pedagogy is discussed and resources (both print and online) for incorporating Afro-Latin@s into the American history curriculum are also provided.

Citation / Publisher Attribution

The Social Studies, v. 106, issue 6, p. 293-300

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