¡Mira, Look!: Yo soy Muslim

¿Hablas un poquito de español? ¿Por qué no acompañarme en nuestras series mensuales de literatura infantil? Desde ahora nuestras críticas literarias en el blog ¡Vamos a leer! se van a hacer también en la lengua de Cervantes, que tantos de nuestros seguidores dominan. Como reza el dicho, hay que profesar con el ejemplo; y con la inclusión del español pretendemos llegar a una audiencia más diversa pero, sobre todo, es una declaración de intenciones.

Book_Page_01En la serie de literatura infantil dedicada a la temática del amor por la comunidad este mes, vamos a introducir el libro Yo soy Muslim, una sugestiva colaboración entre el escritor Mark Gonzales y la ilustradora Mehrdokht Amini. Grosso modo Yo soy Muslim es una tierna carta de amor y empoderamiento de un padre hacia su hija, animándole a celebrar su riqueza cultural musulmana, hispanoamericana e indígena. Esta conexión no pasa inadvertida, pues es de amplia aceptación el que los padres, por una razón no del todo conocida, tengan una relación especial con sus hijas, en la misma medida en que las madres la tienen con sus hijos. Ahora vamos a escuchar el susurro paternal, que lentamente ofrece un desfilar de palabras que no hacen sino expresar su amor por nosotros y la idea de que polvo de estrellas fuimos y en polvo de estrella nos convertiremos:

Hay preguntas que nos hacemos cuando estamos aprendiendo qué significa ser humano… hay preguntas que este mundo te hará… ese día diles: yo soy musulmana, soy de Alá, de los ángeles y de un sitio tan antiguo como el tiempo. Yo hablo español, árabe y sueños.

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Imaginemos por un momento, todavía con los ojos cerrados, que papá también nos da la llave de nuestra ascendencia familiar, digna de respeto y admiración como todas aquellas que confluyen en este mundo que compartimos. Y nos hace ver que detrás de esa ascendencia familiar y sentimiento de orgullo y pertenencia a la misma, está mamá y los abuelos, que a su vez tendrían a sus mamás y papás y abuelos y abuelas. Y de esa bella destilación humana provenimos nosotros, que debemos ser la mejor versión posible; una de la que nuestros ancestros puedan estar orgullosos también, cerrando el círculo en un abrazo familiar.

Yo soy Muslim viene a compartir el orgullo de un padre por lo que representa su hija, un cruce de culturas en el que Alá, la lengua española y actitudes forjadas con perseverancia, respeto e integridad, han hecho posible y merecedor de la más alta estima el camino recorrido. Un padre que anima a su hija a reír y a soñar de forma inocente, sin dejarse vencer por aquellos que no lo hacen.Book_Page_11 Gonzales afirma que el libro fue escrito antes de la era Trump, y sin embargo es totalmente pertinente en un ambiente de xenofobia creciente; porque fomenta el respeto por la diferencia. La periodista Tasbeeh Herwees, de la publicación Good Education, lo califica como una auténtica defensa identitaria. Porque ser uno mismo manteniendo una firme sonrisa, en un ambiente ciertamente crispado por la intolerancia de unos pocos, se torna indispensable y un acto de resistencia de máxima valía. Hagamos caso a esta sugestiva fábula y abracemos, por encima de todo, una personalidad propia y no exenta de diálogo con los demás. Seamos uno y todos a la vez.

Recursos relacionados:

Simon & Schuster, el publicista, describe a su autor Mark Gonzales como un padre futurista y uno de los narradores de historias más innovadores de nuestro tiempo. Su portafolio abarca 20 países e incluye apariciones en TED Talks, HBO, la Universidad de Stanford y las Naciones Unidas. Yo Soy Muslim es su primera aventura en la literatura infantil. Actualmente el autor trabaja entre California y el norte de África.

Para conocer más acerca de este libro, incluyendo las ilustraciones de Mehrdokht Amini, visitar  las siguientes páginas web:

Recursos educativos relacionados con la diversidad e integración del mundo musulmán:

  • Rethinking School’s Rethinking Islamaphobia: poderoso artículo y plan lectivo de un educador musulmán y un desarrollador de currículo que cuestiona hasta qué punto la educación religiosa es efectiva para combatir la intolerancia arraigada en los EEUU. Este recurso puede ir ligado a What Is Islam?, un artículo que recopila nociones básicas sobre el islam y el mundo musulmán.
  • PBS LearningMedia: el islam en América, un plan lectivo que anima a los estudiantes a explorar la diversidad religiosa y cultural dentro del islam.
  • Teaching Tolerance: Debunking Stereotypes About Muslims and Islam: actividad que busca derribar estereotipos sobre el islam.

 

¡Espero que te haya gustado la recomendación de hoy!

Sigue atento a nuestra serie del mes.

Santi

 

September 15th | Week in Review

2017-09-15-WWW-01-01¡Hola a todos! I am very excited to start sharing resources again with you all.

Latinos in Kid Lit has just launched a new series called “Spotlight on Middle Grade Authors.” They’re kicking it off with a feature on Margarita Engle, the Young People’s Poet Laureate. Check it out to hear her describe the birth of her passion for writing.

Rethinking Education shares why Spanish Fluency in the U.S. decreases with each generation. “About 88 percent of Latinos ages 5 to 17 in 2014 said they either speak only English at home or speak English ‘very well,’ compared with 73 percent in 2000.”

–Rethinking Education also posted 9 Bilingual Children’s Books That Make Learning a New Language Easy, a list catered specifically to Spanish teachers.

–For those of you teaching middle or high school history, Rethinking Schools shared Justice for Dreamers- Punish the Authors of Forced Migration, an article that explains how foreign policies creates forced migration.“The perpetrators of the “crime” are those who wrote the trade treaties and the economic reforms that made forced migration the only means for families to survive

— Lastly, Remezcla featured Google latest initiative, which involved the launch of  One of the Largest Digital Collections of Latino Art and History. “The collection features more than 2,500 pieces of art through 90 exhibits.”

Abrazos
Alin Badillo

Summer Reading

May-2017-Vamos-a-LeerHi all,

We’re still here! Some of our students may have left the office, but a few of us are still here quietly working away during the summer months and our local book group is going strong.

So, I’m popping in with a few pieces of news to share.

First, keep your eye out for scattered updates from Hania, who will be keeping us company this summer as she shares more interviews from award-winning Américas authors and illustrators.

Second, I’m pleased to report that our local book group has decided to continue reading adult novels over the summer. In case you’re in Albuquerque and want to join us, or if you’re further afield and just want to follow along, below I’ve copied what we’ll be reading.

That’s it for now!  Don’t be surprised if you hear from us every now and again in the next few weeks when opportunities arise, but come August we’ll return to our scheduled content.

Cheers,
Keira

 

June 19th @ Tractor Brewing |  5:00-7:00 p.m.

1800 4th St NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102

Clarice-LispectorThe Complete Stories of Clarise Lispector

The recent publication by New Directions of five Lispector novels revealed to legions of new readers her darkness and dazzle. Now, for the first time in English, are all the stories that made her a Brazilian legend: from teenagers coming into awareness of their sexual and artistic powers to humdrum housewives whose lives are shattered by unexpected epiphanies to old people who don’t know what to do with themselves. Clarice’s stories take us through their lives―and ours.

From one of the greatest modern writers, these stories, gathered from the nine collections published during her lifetime, follow an unbroken time line of success as a writer, from her adolescence to her death bed.

NY Times Review / New Yorker / The Globe and the Mail / Paris Review

 

July 17th @ Casa Rondeña | 5:00-7:00 p.m.

733 Chavez Rd, Los Ranchos De Albuquerque, NM 87107

Umami

Umami / Umami by Laia Jufresa

It started with a drowning.

Deep in the heart of Mexico City, where five houses cluster around a sun-drenched courtyard, lives Ana, a precocious twelve-year-old who spends her days buried in Agatha Christie novels to forget the mysterious death of her little sister years earlier. Over the summer she decides to plant a milpa in her backyard, and as she digs the ground and plants her seeds, her neighbors in turn delve into their past. The ripple effects of grief, childlessness, illness and displacement saturate their stories, secrets seep out and questions emerge — Who was my wife? Why did my Mom leave? Can I turn back the clock? And how could a girl who knew how to swim drown?

In prose that is dazzlingly inventive, funny and tender, Laia Jufresa immerses us in the troubled lives of her narrators, deftly unpicking their stories to offer a darkly comic portrait of contemporary Mexico, as whimsical as it is heart-wrenching.

NPR Book Interview / The Culture Trip Review

December 9th | Week in Review

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¡Hola a todos! Winter break is about to start, so this is is my last post for this year. It is an honor for me to share all of these resources. I can’t wait to see what 2017 brings to all of us. I hope the coming holidays bring you peace, happiness, serenity, and excitement.

– Our Facebook friends Latinos in Kid Lit shared Creating a Diverse Book Legacy: Interview with Culture Chest Founder. “We are a humble startup with big dreams of promoting culture through books, toys, and other avenues.”

– Also, Lee & Low Books shared their top 5: Getting in the Winter Spirit Reading List. I
personally like the book The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.

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Welcoming New Writers: Valeria García

13522698_10208626697256358_5020862736627394617_o¡Saludos, y mucho gusto!

My name is Valeria and I am so excited to contribute to this amazing project! I am a Masters candidate in Latin American Studies and a second year law school student at the University of New Mexico (UNM). I am happy to work under Keira as a graduate assistant in K-12 outreach programs at the UNM Latin American and Iberian Institute. I will be your handy dandy translator of curricula for Latin American books to use in the classroom. I look forward to working for all of you and I hope that my work helps to further your goals of implementing bilingual/Latin American books in your lesson plans. I want to take this opportunity to give you some brief information about myself so you can get to know me a little better.

I am the daughter of Mexican immigrants, and although I grew up in Albuquerque I was always immersed in a deeply rich Latin American culture. Reading books like The House on Mango Street, In the Time of the Butterflies and Esperanza Rising when I was young was invaluable to me, especially because the majority of books we had to read in class did not have much Latin American influence, much less any characters that I could relate to on a cultural level.

I decided to get my Bachelor’s degree in Spanish and Sociology from UNM, where I worked with various non-profit organizations that focus on civil rights and education for minorities. Because I have spent my life in the immigrant community, I knew that I wanted to practice immigration law. I therefore decided to apply to the dual degree graduate program that the Latin American and Iberian Institute provides, and I have been working on my Masters and JD ever since! My concentrations for my Masters degree are in human rights and political science.

An important thing to know about me is that I am incredibly passionate about the Spanish language. I am an avid believer that Spanish must be both taught and preserved in the United States, especially considering how incredibly diverse we are as a country, and how important it is to acquire some sort of bilingual education. What better way to preserve the language than by implementing culturally-rich bilingual/Latin American books in K-12 programs, right?

So, as you can imagine, my contribution to Vamos a Leer is a perfect fit for me. I am so excited to work with such a great team of faculty, students, and community members; and I am even more excited to provide you with Spanish translations to different lesson plans and serve as a general resource to you. Estoy a sus órdenes, y estoy muy agradecida por tener la oportunidad de trabajar para ustedes.

Con mucho cariño,

Valeria

 

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WWW: PBS Documentary – “Latino Americans”

dreamstimemaximum_13021981PBS is currently showing “Latino Americans,” a three part, six hour documentary series chronicling the “rich and varied history and experiences of Latinos, who have helped shape the United States over the last 500-plus years…”

The series presents commonly-taught moments of American history through a Latino lens. The first episode, “Foreigners in Their Own Land,” explores the early histories of California, New Mexico, and Texas—detailing the early settlements, the Alamo, California’s Bear Flag Revolt, racial violence associated with the gold rush, the encroachment of railroads on the common land holdings of New Mexico, etc…

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