Friday, August 21, 2015

September Events - Boulder to Vietnam and Places In-Between


The world's largest free literary festival



[from the festival website]
Internationally acclaimed authors in conversation, a festival of ideas and innovative minds.
Join us for a taste of what has been declared “the greatest literary show on earth.”
Boulder Public Library
A festival of literature from all over the world, JLF at Boulder, Colorado, promises to be an event unlike any other. Free and accessible to everyone, rich with words and ideas, the festival invites us to join together in examining the human experience through the reflections and imaginations of distinguished contemporary authors from around the world. In an uplifting celebration of the mind and heart, authors from the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Europe engage in provocative conversations about life and society, economics and the arts, equity, freedom, and the care of our planet. In our critical times, the penetrating, intercultural dialogue exchanged at this festival of ideas speaks deeply to individuals and gives rise to the joy of community.
Join us in Boulder to taste the beauty of our common humanity reflected in the beauty of Colorado! Beautiful Boulder, Colorado is known for its 300 days of sunshine per year and its highly educated, professional population of more than 100,000; for its deep interest and leadership in social, technical, and environmental innovation; and for yoga & mindfulness practices, cycling & fitness, and natural health & healing.
The Festival will be held at the Boulder Library and Civic Lawns with a week of lead-up activities held at the Boulder Library, the University of Colorado at Boulder, Naropa University, the Denver Public Library and other venues.
This Fall, the Jaipur Literature Festival will travel to Boulder, Colorado as a creative caravan of writers and thinkers, poets and balladeers from around the world. In true JLF fashion, the festival will start and end with a sublime music session.
For the festival schedule and a list of speakers, jump to here.
[from the museum press release]
Thursday, September 3
7 p.m.
The U.S.-Mexico border is in the news and the subject of great, and at times heated, debate. What is largely lost in the headlines is a vital long-term, nuanced understanding of the modern immigrant experience. 

For the past five years Jason De León has used path-breaking forensic, archaeological and ethnographic research to examine the trek north through hard desert, putting a human face on the real life and death struggles of migrants. Come and hear tragic and exhilarating stories from De León's compelling research on one of the most significant, dangerous and clandestine places in the world. De León is assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan and director of the Undocumented Migration Project.

This is the inaugural talk for the George McJunkin Lecture, recognizing the African American cowboy who discovered bison bones in Folsom, New Mexico, that eventually made archaeological history. 

Ricketson Auditorium
$8 member, $10 nonmember

2001 Colorado Blvd
Denver, CO 80205

Museum open daily
9 am - 5 pm
 On Two Fronts: Latinos & Vietnam
[from the PBS press release]

- Tuesday, September 22, 2015, 10:00-11:30 pm ET on PBS –
ON TWO FRONTS: LATINOS & VIETNAM, premiering on PBS during Hispanic Heritage Month, captures a complex aspect of the Vietnam War: the legacy of Latino veterans and their families during the conflict. Airing Tuesday, September 22, 2015, 10:00-11:30 p.m. ET, the program examines the Latino experience during a war that placed its heaviest burden on working-class youth and deeply affected Latino communities. The documentary is part of PBS Stories of Service  -- providing compelling stories of those who have served and a deeper understanding of our nation's military history.

ON TWO FRONTS producer Mylène Moreno takes a comprehensive look at pivotal events on both the homefront and the battlefront, painting a vivid portrait of Latino Americans during a tumultuous time. Through compelling stories and candid interviews, the film conveys the rich heritage of military service, a deeply rooted part of Latino cultural identity in the U.S., and looks at the contributions made by Latino veterans and their families during the Vietnam era. The film also explores the controversy and changing attitudes amid the growing Chicano anti-war movement and within a community reeling over disproportionate losses and divided over participation in the war.

“This absorbing new film gives viewers a fresh new perspective on the significant role played by Latino Americans during a defining moment in our nation'’s history, and offers extraordinary insights into how this diverse group helped shape events during that turbulent time,” said Dave Davis of Oregon Public Broadcasting, the film’s presenter.

Filmed in the Southwest and in Vietnam, ON TWO FRONTS: LATINOS & VIETNAM includes firsthand accounts from dozens of Latino veterans and their families and commentary from historians, social activists and other experts. To evoke the dramatic events unfolding at home and overseas, the documentary combines lush photography with home movies, archival footage, graphic newsreels and personal photographs.

Latinos began questioning the cost of war and the price of citizenship for the first time during the Vietnam conflict. In communities where there were few alternatives to service, the war exacted a heavy toll among Latinos.
“With this film, we wanted to look back, five decades later, with the benefit of hindsight, at the Vietnam War — at its costs and consequences — and ask some difficult questions about the price of war and citizenship,” said producer Moreno of Souvenir Pictures, Inc.

At home, the Latino anti-Vietnam war movement gained momentum - —a radical departure from past wars when Latino civil rights activists used high rates of military participation to prove their worth as good citizens. This time, activists pointed to similarly high rates of participation — and mortality — and argued that Latinos were being exploited. Latinos organized antiwar events to address both the war and conditions at home, culminating in unprecedented protest rallies for Chicanos.

Overseas, Latino soldiers were presented with both opportunities and challenges. Alongside Anglo-American and African-American soldiers, many discovered their differences faded away during combat. Others describe racial tensions and stereotypes that persisted in Vietnam or upon returning home.

For many, the price of service was too high. Latino veterans still suffer post-traumatic stress disorder in higher percentages than black and white American veterans. Many of the Latinos who went to war returned ill-prepared for college and to the same limited career options they had before leaving home. If one reason Latinos fought for their country was to trade service for career benefits, then Vietnam’s legacy did not always fulfill that promise.

Produced by Souvenir Pictures, Inc., ON TWO FRONTS: LATINOS & VIETNAM is a presentation of Oregon Public Broadcasting in association with Latino Public Broadcasting, with major funding provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

# # #
About Mylène MorenoLos Angeles-based filmmaker Mylène Moreno makes documentaries that reflect her diverse cultural interests. She has followed Mexican fútbol fanáticos in Los Angeles and profiled notable Arab Americans in all walks of life. Recalling Orange County was a personal look at immigrant rights and education in California’s Orange County. True-Hearted Vixens featured female jocks pursuing dreams of professional athletic greatness in a startup tackle football league. She produced the first episode of the landmark PBS series, ¡CHICANO! History of the Mexican American Civil Rights Movement. Moreno is a graduate of Stanford University’s documentary film program.

To view the trailer for this documentary, click to this page.


Library of Congress to Host 2015 Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature
[from the LOC press release]

Authors Duncan Tonatiuh and Margarita Engle will receive the Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature during a special awards presentation on Friday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m. in the Mary Pickford Theater, located on the third floor of the Library of Congress James Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. 

The award is co-sponsored by the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) and administered by both Tulane University’s Stone Center for Latin American Studies and Vanderbilt University’s Center for Latin American Studies. The Library of Congress Hispanic Division and its Center for the Book host the event, which is free and open to the public. Reservations are required and can be made through the Library’s Special Events Office at (202) 707-5218.

Author and illustrator Duncan Tonatiuh will be honored for his book Separate is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation, (Abrams Books, 2014). Tonatiuh, whose roots are both Mexican and American, has won both the Pura Belpre Illustrator Award and the Tomás Rivera Mexican American children's book award for previous works.

Cuban-American novelist Margarita Engle was previously an Americas Award honoree for The Surrender Tree in 2007 and Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck in 2012. This year, she receives the Americas Award for Silver People: Voices for the Panama Canal (Houghton Mifflin, 2014).

The Americas Award recognizes outstanding U.S. works of fiction, poetry, folklore or selected nonfiction published in the previous year that authentically and engagingly portrays Latin Americans, Caribbeans or Latinos in the United States. For more information about the award and CLASP, visit

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s first-established federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, publications, programs and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at

The Hispanic Division, established in 1939, is the center for the study of the cultures and societies of Hispanic/Latinos in the United States and Latin America, the Caribbean, the Iberian Peninsula and other areas where Spanish or Portuguese influence have been significant. For more information about the Hispanic Reading Room and the Hispanic collections of the Library, visit

Since its creation by Congress in 1977 to “stimulate public interest in books and reading,” the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress ( has become a national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages, nationally and internationally. The center provides leadership for affiliated state centers for the book (including the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and nonprofit reading-promotion partners and plays a key role in the Library’s annual National Book Festival. It also oversees the Library’s website and administers the Library’s Young Readers Center.


The Texas Book Festival announces its lineup, schedule, and other events at a party on September 3 in Austin.  The Festival happens October 17-18.  I'll have more details closer to the festival opening.


An August Event

Back to September.  I have many events, appearances, signings, etc, scheduled for the next several weeks.  Here are a few from September:

1.  Being Latino: The Colorado Experience, September 9, 2015 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:15 p.m during Professor Abdala-Mesa's class on the University of Colorado at Denver campus.  I'll be discussing Desperado: A Mile High Noir with the students, who are reading this book this semester.

 2.  Books & Brews - ReadCon:  September 12, 6-8 p.m. at Zoe's Café, 715 10th Street, Greeley, CO.  This annual event features many events throughout the day.  At Zoe's, I'll be selling and signing books along with dozens of other Colorado authors.

3.  ReadCon After Hours:  Read Con:  September 26, 6-8 p.m. at the Carbon Valley Regional Library, 7 Park Avenue, Firestone, CO.  A repeat of the Greeley event in a historical Colorado small town.

4.  2015 Latin@ Book Festival, September 18-19, 9-5 p.m. at Rawlings Library, Ryals Room, 100 E Abriendo Ave, Pueblo, CO. I'll be on hand on the 19th from 9-noon.  Denise Chavez is the main speaker.

There also is a panel discussion about Art and Culture of the Chicano Movement scheduled for the Museo de las Americas, 861 Santa Fe Dr, Denver, on September 16, 6-8 p.m.  I'll be in the audience for this one as Flo is one of the presenters.  

Finally ... from our recent travels to the U.K., a couple of random photos.

This was taken in Oxford -- ah, students.

Then this next one from Stonehenge.  I'd like to say I took this at dawn with my trusty cell phone camera but the truth is that it's a scene from a film inside the Stonehenge visitor's center.  I have pics of the actual place -- check out one on my Facebook page.



Anonymous said...

Manuel: I was interviewed for ON TWO FRONTS: Latinos and Vietnam. And have been doing promotion of the program on public radio here in Texas. I was also part of the Telling Project a three act play in which vets tell the story of their military service. It was broadcast on Veteran's Day last year on PBS. I was one of two Latinos in the cast and the only Vietnam era vet to tell his story. The program is still available on PBS and on YouTube in HD. Here is the link:


Gregg Barrios

Manuel Ramos said...

Gregg - thanks for the info - I will follow the link. If you have any comments about the finished product for On Two Fronts, you might share them with La Bloga's readers. Yes, peace.