19. Latinas in New Media (Part 1)

November 27
READ: Angélica Pérez-Litwin’s “Will the New Latina Please Stand Up? How Social Media Is Broadening The Latina Image” on Huffington Post @LatinoVoices
READ: Kalyn Belsha’s “Most Powerful Latinas in Social Media” on VOXXI @voxxinews
DISCUSSION: Kiara Morales & Adam Lang

Download PowerPoint Presentation

Chongas 1.0? How would you compare these MadTV characters to the YouTube video of the Chonga Girls presented by Kiara & Adam? (Also, keep in mind the other Latino being represented here.)

This is a webseries starring America Ferrera called Christine:

For this section’s post, please go to Blogs by Latinas: A Worldwide Directory of Latina Bloggers and choose one blog to talk about in our class blog. Please insert a link to the blog of your choice; make sure you DO NOT REPEAT a blog someone else has already discussed. How does the blog of your choice affirm / challenge / complicate / dialogue with what we have been discussing all semester? The blogs in the directory range in aesthetic, format, and content; they are in Spanish, Spanglish, and English. Does the blog of your choice reference other social media (i.e. a YouTube channel or Twitter account)? Some might be more personal, testimonial accounts while others might be more professional, or academic.


54 Responses to 19. Latinas in New Media (Part 1)

  1. alexandriagarry says:

    New Media is ever expanding and the only constant is that it will change. I took a new media class in 2008 where discussions focused on the new apple product, the iPad and on a project that would enhance the video game experience through voice recognition. Two year later I went back to the same class and the structure was completely different. Students were actually working on tablets from different brands and the Xbox Kinect was old news. However, New Media is as much about the content as it is the technology and this is where it gets far more interesting.

    The Internet made information easily accessible, New Media/Social media made mass communication available to everyone with a computer and a cause. It has diversified the information we are receiving and giving voice to those who had none in the traditional medias. The Huffington Post article discussed how it has broadened the Latina image and from reading some of the posts on “Blogs By Latinas” you can see a perfect example of this concept.

    “Dallas Internet Marketing” was one such blog created by a Latina to discuss the trends in the marketing field. In traditional medias the general topics for Latinas to discuss would be generated by stereotypical caricature, but in the new media age author Aida Rojas is able to present herself as the in-the-know, tech-savvy, businesswoman she is. She writes about marketing techniques, reports on conferences, and goes into detail on studies and reports to give the reader a better understanding of the marketing process.

    Rojas’ blog is strictly professional, the purpose being to promote her freelance consulting company, but it still challenges the stereotypes of Latinas we’ve discussed through the semester and reinforces that there is so much more to the Latina, like everyone else there is an overgeneralization that exaggerates characteristics for entertainment purposes. The reality however, is that there are Latina students, mothers, businesswomen, etc. they come in different shapes and sizes and accent or not have something to say and new media gives them the representation they have been looking for.

  2. Elizabeth Parsons says:

    I chose http://www.gypsyinthecity.com/ by Ada. I love how her blog has such a strong message of self-acceptance and love. Her post about her hair was informative, but also inspiring. Instead of subscribing to traditional Anglo beauty standards, she learned how to embrace her own natural beauty through learning how to manage her curls. In this post she mentions a YouTube blogger, Taren916, who posts curly-hair tutorials online and who acted as a mentor in her quest for natural hair. There is also the option to “like” Gypsy in the City on Facebook.

    Another great post was the recent “Destapa Tu Futuro!” about her college experience. Ada is a first-generation college student, and talks about her determination to pursue a higher education, which manifested itself in a strong motivation to succeed in high school. She also admits that she knew her mother, a single parent of six, could not afford to send her to college, so she investigated scholarships. Ada shares information for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, which helped her achieve her goals and aspires to have a college degree in every Latino household by 2025. I noticed this post in particular because, first, it has a lot of personal meaning for me (my mother, although not Latina, went through a similar experience and put herself through school), and second, because it addresses the attitudes towards education that we have been discussing in class. Ada clearly espouses the position that education is crucial to advancement, unlike what we saw in Real Women Have Curves.

    I love how open and personal Ada’s blog is. She frankly addresses issues of body image, style, and self-esteem; even though I am not Latina, I found that her blog still spoke to me and there were several posts I could relate to. I really appreciate how she includes her Latina heritage, but her blog is still open enough to include anyone, no matter what their ethnicity is.

    • Lucia Parisi says:

      I took the time to look at Ada’s blog. I agree that most of her blog is very relateabale to people of all necessities. This is important because it breaks up stereotypes. For example: we all can suffer from self steam issues. You don’t need to be Hispanic or white to struggle with this.

  3. Caroline/a Nieto says:

    I can understand why people can see the Chonga girls as a representation of Latinas, but there are elements in these videos that clearly make it satire. Although there are people that may act like the girls do in the video, the actions they take to represent themselves are so elevated and over the top. As someone stated in class the use of glue for their hair or the sharpie for their lips only elevate the video to a satire level. I think what they are doing it to bring attention to the stereotypes and to take make a comment on how people are self defining themselves and in a way they are fighting against the stereotype. These girls are clearly able to look at the stereotypes that they see around them everyday and are able to laugh at them and poke fun at them, because they know that it isn’t who they are. Maybe they can be seen as some sort of pioneer, we are latinas who do not act like this and want to comment on those that do act like this, and although there are people out there that act like this it does not mean we all act like this. In a way it can be a way for the stereotypes to be broken, or to allow Latinas who do act like this to see how others perceive them? The humor allows others to know that yes, there are people like but on the other hand there are people that can look at these stereotypes

    On the other hand, maybe we need to let people be who they want to be. If people feel comfortable defining themselves as Chonga girls- why push against that? Although it may be a negative stereotypes for some Latinas, it is how others define themselves and feel comfortable in this bubble (if it wasn’t then this stereotype wouldn’t exist). It is important for everyone to define themselves for themselves, but there are people that prefer to identify themselves with a group. It may be odd to some people, but it is so normal for them. For me, as a Latina that grew up here in the states, I tried really hard to fight against those stereotypes because I could not identify with them. But, I never questioned others for being who they wanted to be. I guess, live and let live?

    • Hailey Rosa says:

      I agree that the Chonga Girls video is, although assaulting, is intended for satirical purposes. “Latinas have been silenced by circumstances or lack of a socialcultural podium…have been defined by caricature archetypes constructed by traditional mass media…often existing as either a sexy, loud, and passionate girl or an older, submissive, heavy-accented woman.” The Chonga Girls have harnassed the modern advances of technology to raise awareness about the stereotypes that plagues the Latina community today. The girls excentuate their appearance and personalities, sharpie lip liner, glued hair, with an aggressive sexual attitude. Technology has allowed those previously cut off of support or resources (mainly females) to provide them education or aid in various fields or aspects of life. Magazines such as Home Living or Parenteen Magazine have typically sought a white female audience, where as he Mitu youtube channel is focused on Latina mothers. Although we argued over the continuing social and ethnic stereotypes boistered by this internet resource, who would you trust to raise your child? Someone of a different gender/race/age/sexuality…. the categories are endless, the point is we are reassured when someone like us provides advise or insight.

    • Elizabeth Parsons says:

      I definitely agree that the Chonga girls video was intended to be satire. It’s meant to poke fun at some of the more extreme measures girls will take in order to make themselves attractive or fit into the mold of what is perceived as feminine perfection. I do agree, however, that if that is how women choose to present themselves, then they should have the freedom to do so regardless of whether or not it is perceived as a “negative” stereotype. It is important to leave those choices up to the women themselves; empowerment comes from making decisions on their own.

      • Katie Blake says:

        I also agree. While offensive, just the fact that the video is from MADtv just goes to show that it is not meant to be taken seriously. In this show and others such as SNL, the point is to exaggerate people, stereotypes, etc. even at people’s or groups of people’s own expense. But the main idea is just that it IS an exaggeration, therefore the ideas represented are not meant to be realistic, so I think that makes it much less offensive.

    • Ernie Abreu says:

      I also agree with your statement Caroline. The Chonga Girls video was a video intended to bring humor, aiming at the stereotypes of Latinas from urban areas. Although these stereotypes are very exaggerated and might be viewed as negative characteristics of Latinas, the media, as well as the world, should not be so judgmental of the people that wish to identify themselves this way. Only if the world could understand that videos like this are humor based, therefore, no one should base their opinions about Latinas on the stereotypes portrayed in this video.

      • Mariah Monroe says:

        I think the Chonga Girls video, though intended for humorous purposes, only sheds a negative light on the portrayal of Latina’s in the media. At what point does something like that stop being funny and start to become offensive? Had someone of non-latino origins made a video like that, it wouldn’t have been seen as humorous in the least bit.

        Latinas should work together to create a more positive image of themselves in the media but content like this is certainly not going to help achieve that goal.

      • Skylar Smith says:

        I completely agree with your statements. It seemed way over the top and to some extent offensive, in my mind. It did have its humorous aspects to it but after a while it is not that funny. Even the interview they had was a little over the top. Content like this will not help Latinas, it hurts the image and the focus Latinas have.

      • Kelvin Li says:

        Chonga Girls really portray a percentage of Latina women in the country. They poke fun at it and make people understand what they are like. I feel that they promote awareness and show how silly these Latina women actually are. I think they are trying to attack them but not attack them directly. So the sense of humor is used as an act to block out the negativity. It just makes people laugh and feel stupid. I think they want to get an reaction out of people. But they market it in a way so they are not having direct criticism from people. It’s like you’re discriminating certain types of people and telling them that you can’t do that. But they play it off in such a prideful way to show how silly it is and not directly attack them.

    • joserfigueroa says:

      I have seen the Choga girls video before and honestly think it is hilarious. I come from an environment where there are many Latina’s who fit into this stereotype. Of course, the chonga girls are extremely exaggerated but I believe it is similar to the work done on shows such as Saturday Night Live. These Latinas are able to make the “chonga” look seem comedic and honestly silly. It brings awareness to how young Latinas conform in a comedic way that makes people watch.

  4. Yining He says:

    The blog I chose is Spanglish Ink (http://spanglishink.wordpress.com/), where its author describes herself as an aspiring Young Adult author who happens to be Brown. This blog is very interesting because she discusses literature, writing and popular culture in relation to race and minority issues. She also reviews literature written by Latino writers, highlighting such works to others.

    One of the reasons why I chose this blog is because it is very self-consciously racialized. I say this in a sense that the writer points out her race from the beginning in the header and discusses rather transparently her thoughts on being a Latina and black writer. This is a good representation for writers in a minority group, and is a great outlet for other writers who feel the same frustrations in the publishing world.

    One of her entries discussed how she dealt with the process of writing her character’s race. This is quite an important issue, especially because books are so frequently adapted to movies in today’s world. One of the recent controversies was after the release of The Hunger Games, and many audience members expressed outrage or confusion at the casting of some black characters. This brought up the issue of how characters in books, especially the YA genre, are white by default, and only colored in exception. This is very problematic because not only is a lack of representation, but the treatment of a particular race/ethnicity as the “default”, the normative race, leads to a cycle of dominance. The fact that readers imagine characters as white (sometimes despite explicit descriptions in books otherwise) is actually kind of terrible, because it’s as if the readers can only imagine a world with one race, and this translates into attitudes and behavior in the real world, where minority groups can be easily erased. It demonstrates how, as a journalist expresses in an article, “the humanity of minorities is often denied and thwarted,” just by the sheer minds of readers alone. Seeing a lack of representation of your own race/ethnicity in literature and/or movies can also be very frustrating, as if your identity is not validated by the culture you consume.

    Here’s a link to an article discussing the casting of The Hunger Games: http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/books/2012/03/hunger-games-and-trayvon-martin.html#ixzz1sFMDaVda

    I feel like many Latina or black and even Asian writers can relate to this blog, because many minority groups face the same problems in areas of book publishing. Many of us are afraid of not being heard or seen, just because of our race.

    • rserreti says:

      When looking at this blog, I also felt the same feelings. It was very apparent that the blog was written by a Latina/black woman. It talks about the struggles that she faces because of her ethnicity. It also discusses the struggles she faces in her writing career because of what she looks like. I liked this blog because it showed some of the ways she dealt with the discrimination that she faced and it allowed readers to see the real struggles she went through.

    • Ernie Abreu says:

      I really like this blog, I felt at home when I read a couple of her posts. I felt like I can relate to her struggles and the discrimination that she faced as a woman of color because being a man of color, I have gone through similar treatments in my life. What I love most about it is because she is a woman of color, her work is credible. In other words, she is not making some stories up about things that she cannot relate too. Her readers that can relate to her also have a better understanding of her work. If she was a white woman, talking about struggles that she has never experienced, the stories loses its value.

  5. Lucia Parisi says:

    I thought the Mitu video shown in class was really interesting and very useful for bilingual homes. I know a lot of my hispanic friends who were born in the US that are terrible at Spanish. Two of my friends, they’re twins, were raised in a Spanish household with Spanish speaking parents who barely speak English. However, they don’t really make sense when they speak Spanish. I think the reason for this is that their parents thought they would learn the language on their own but they didn’t.

    This video also reminded me of a video we watched at the beginning of class called “black and latino” This featured an actress that mentioned that if she wanted to eat, she had to ask in Spanish. I think this is a clever way to teach your children how to speak Spanish. They speak enough English at school and if they speak English at home, they’ll never learn the Spanish language. This is what happened to my friends. They would answer their parents in English when they spoke to them in Spanish

    Being bilingual is a great advantage in the workplace because you can reach more people. The article “Most powerful women in social media” lists many Latinas who are successful in social media. One of the reasons, besides their intelligence, is that they are bilingual so they are able to approach to a bigger audience. This is why it is so important for people, specially Hispanics with Hispanic parents, to speak the language.

    • Ernie Abreu says:

      Being able to speak two languages IS a great advantage to have in life. I have experienced the lack of teaching by parents, and the lack of learning a second language by children as well. My sister is 5 yrs old and she can barely speak Spanish. She cannot speak a whole sentence without throwing some Spanglish in the way. To me this is upsetting because the first language that my sister learned how to speak was Spanish, but because of her daily interactions in school, she has slowly forgotten the language. At times, I tell her that she knows Spanish, why doesn’t she speak it? Her response is that she thinks she sounds weird so she refuses to speak it. I feel like this video is a great way to encourage parents and children to speak their native language. As for my sister, I can have a whole conversation with her and she will understand everything. I just cant expect her to answer back in the same language.

      • Katie Blake says:

        This reminds me of my roommate. She’s Vietnamese and her parents are from Vietnam. Though her parents know English, they only speak Vietnamese, even when talking to my roommate, who only knows English. She can understand them when they speak to her in Vietnamese, but she just never learned the language well enough to respond. I think its a great skill to be able to speak multiple languages and I agree with you that parents should teach children their native language and encourage them to speak it, I wish I was fluent in more than one language.

  6. Hailey Rosa says:

    Our discussion of dolls today got me thinking about on of the episodes of “The Office.” Toby spends the entire episode trying to buy a Princess Unicorn toy from Darryl, only after paying a huge sum of money does Toby find out the Barbie for his daughter is African American. I couldnt find a clip of the exact moment but the look of dispair on his face says it enough, Toby doesnt know what to do with the doll. Growing up in a home solely with ethnic Barbies (Pocohontas, Esmerelda, Eskimo Barbie, and my favorite, an African American scuba doll) I dont really understand the hesitation of buying dolls of different races. I wondered, how would you react recieving a toy of different race? How would you feel about giving one to your child?

    • Lucia Parisi says:

      I personally never had a doll that wasn’t white even though I was raised in Peru. I never thought about interracial dolls until this class. When I have kids, I would most likely buy them dolls of different races so that they are aware that there is people of all colors and sizes.

    • Stacey Pecor says:

      I definitely agree with you in that I don’t understand the hesitation of buying dolls of different races. I have a similar story to yours except when I was little, I had all white barbie dolls. One year for Christmas I specifically asked for the “brown baby tumbles” because I was sick and tired of having barbies that all looked the same. My parents gladly bought me the doll and I couldn’t have been happier having more diversity with my dolls. However, I wish from the start I was exposed to as many different types as you were.

      It’s strange to think how I would feel giving one to my own child, but because of all the topics we discuss in this class, it has opened my eyes and given me a different perspective of races/cultures. I don’t think I would hesitate buying one and will most likely give them to my children some day.

  7. Lucia Parisi says:

    I chose my 2 precious boys (http://my2preciousboys.blogspot.com/). This blog is about a mother of two children who loves to bake as well as craft. This is interesting because we have talked about how people don’t give Latinas enough credit as hard working. This lady is a married stay at home mother who has a lot of time on her hands. She remind me of Gloria from Modern Family. She is an attractive lady with a lot of time on her hands.

    Like many Spanish families, she is very family oriented. She has pictures of her husband, children and other family members at family oriented parties. She also dedicated a page of her blog to her song for his 7th birthday. Another thing that is very stereotypical is that is very religious. Many Hispanics are very christian. She takes pictures of her Christmas decorations showing the importance of her faith. Besides families, recepies take up a lot of her blog. She involved in the PTO so she often bake for school and people. She teaches people how make things from marble chocolate cake to empanadas. Knowing how to cook delicious looking food is very stereotypical of a hispanic woman.

    Something negative about this lady is that she supports the stereotype that hispanics are uneducated. Her writing is not very professional and she could be better at forming sentences. This might be because English is her second language. She could’ve better phrased this sentence so that she didn’t seem arrogant: “We made the pre elections for the PTO, and guess what I was elected to be secretary. Since I told the ladies I didn’t want the president or vice-president positions.” I wished I picked another blog after reading this because she made herself very unlikeable.

  8. briannamartone12 says:

    The Presentation that we watched today in class really opened my eyes to stereotyping and the different ways in which it can be thought about. These Chonga Girls made me think about stereotyping with a different perspective. I found throughout class, I was trying to form my own opinion on the subject matter. However, this came to me with much difficulty than I thought it would. I get how this representation should not be considered acceptable. However, part of me thinks if these girls are Latina and they want to be doing this, who exactly would I be to have a say about it? Another part of me began to realize how sometimes when stereotypes have become so normalized, we no longer question them because we think that they are okay. But, Is enforcing Stereotypes okay? I know this might sound bad but I kept thinking how if my Latina friends saw this clip, I actually think they wouldn’t see a problem with it. I also don’t think they would be in the slightest bit offended by it. In all actuality they would probably see it to be comical.

    In order to start forming my own opinion on this topic, I find that this is problematic and I say this because even though there might be girls who do live up to this lifestyle, these girls seem to have the wrong reasoning behind why they are doing this. They think of this lifestyle as something that is almost below them since they don’t identify with it. They claim that there was girls who were exactly like the images they are perpetuating but that they did not identify with this image. But now, they are doing all of this and putting in this effort to make a joke out of something. The representation of Latinas that they perpetuate makes them seem obnoxious. I think it is almost cruel to do something like this to people who are within their own racial identities. It is clear that they almost think of themselves as better than these girls which is where it is most problematic for me.

    Within this presentation, I also wanted to comment on the channels on youtube that were directed towards Latinas. I think this is beneficial because sometimes there is nowhere for Latinas to have somewhere where they can find people who understand similar issues they face. We all in some form search for this connectiveness with an identity that we identify ourselves with. It’s important that one can get to information that is relevant to them. I think that this is beneficial because it is needed in our society and people need to identify with communities that impact their lives.

    • Lucia Parisi says:

      I agree that it’s useful for this channel to target the Latino audience. It’s important for bilingual homes to keep their homes and families bilingual. Most people don’t bother teaching their children the Spanish language because they already speak English, main language at school. Others don’t realize that it takes work to teach children a second language at home so these children are able to understand Spanish but not write or speak it very well. In the long run, being bilingual benefits the children by giving them an advantage when applying for jobs therefore all bilingual households should take some time to watch these videos and be motivated to maintain their homes bilingual.

      • sorlyz says:

        About the Chonga girls:
        I am not sure if these girls see them as better than who they are making fun of but maybe they made up the Chongas because they were bullied. In a clip we saw in class the Chonga girls said they were bullied and called nerds when they were younger. But that does not excuse them from playing up this stereotype even if it is to be comical. Although this is a form of expression, these girls are spreading the idea through YouTube that many Latinas are like this and that is not okay. Because of media today, I try hard to not get offended when people say “well you don’t look Puerto Rican”.

      • morgan radin says:

        In response to sorlyz:How does their history of bullying, whether fact or not, justify anything? I do remember them saying this in the in class video, and I wondered then, is that their cover so that people wont misinterpret their jokes? I know that this may sound extreme but I feel like this is the young girls cover to ensure that no one can hold them accountable for the messages they are sending out. Also, the term ‘bullying’ in the United States is such an issue in the United States, particularly for Latino youth. Where they really bullied (the legal term) or experiencing mean-spirited negative behavior (not as severe)?

  9. Stacey Pecor says:

    The bog i chose to evaluate is Anna’s Mirror (http://annasmirror.blogspot.com). Just from the title, I had suspected there would be lots of photos or some connection to fashion or appearance. The whole display of the blog page is sparkly and glamorous. The blogger Anna is of Mexican decent and is modeling in the majority of her photos because of her strong interest in fashion. I examined her and her poses and found that in the majority of them she is smiling and posing is an appropriate friendly way. Her main photo for the blog page her hair is long and wavy, as a Latina women is presented often. This blog was specifically focused on fashion and photos of places she had been traveling to. There was no place for any substantial informative or opinionated information.
    The second blog I came across I wanted to add because of how different it was from the first one. In this next one, Latinas with a Cause (http://latina-with-a-cause.blogspot.com/) drew my attention because of it’s bold title. Sylvia is the blog creator and I love how at the very top she gives a quick summary of her purpose – (stating things like “I am Latina, I am a senior, I am today, I am tomorrow, I have something to say, let’s be heard, because we matter”) This 55 year old is a mother and grandmother and by choosing to include this information again reinforces the family values like other Hispanics do. Another piece that really stood out was how she says she supports women in business. As we discussed in class today, there were not many channels online for Latina careers or business oriented topics. Everything was based on being a homemaker
    As I was reading through she posted a current issue regarding how NBC joins the war on women in television. I thought it was interesting how the article showed a defensive side from women and how some may not be watching the network “as long as NBC discards its talented women so easily”. I liked how in contrast to the first blog I looked at, this one focuses on the media and how women are effected and not just photos posted of her self image.

  10. Yamile Hernandez says:

    I chose the literatorium by vashelle. Its a but more of a personal blog but what i found interesting is that vashelle is the new modern Latina facing many of the obstacles we all see today–and i can connect and relate to her. Vashelle is not only a college graduate who is pursing her careet as an educator–but after her husband came home from asghanistan she decided it was time for a change and agreed to move her family to hawaii where her husband would be stationed. although she was itching to move out of texas where she had lived for 18 years. However when she made the move she talks about not anticipating the struggle she would have by being so far away from her family, missing out on family sunday dinners and having her children move so far away from there extended family and traditions. Its refreshing to see someone be so sincere with the struggle we as Latinas have between roles in the modern time—you must learn how to balance being a new modern women on a path to a career but at the same time being a wife, mother, daughter and trying to keep our traditions alive. sometimes these roles contradict themselves and it becomes a struggle to keep up with them all. Despite the hardships vashelle is facing, she has found time to do a blog analysis on a few women’s issues—which she explains is one of her passions. What i found refreshing is that she is critically analyzing each issue of cosmopolitan for this year, voicing out on what se believes is unacceptable for young women and teens to be told is “right”. Being that she struggled with identity she understands the power the media, sex and the ideal image for women can be. she challenges these views by speaking out. Vaselles blog is personal yet powerful point of view, and offers a look into many of the real issues latinas are facing today, and also challenges perpetuated stereotypes an views of latinas.

  11. stephaniegiannoutsos says:

    The blog I chose was http://thebiggirlscode.tumblr.com/ and is basically a blog celebrating the many different shapes and sizes that Latinas may have. One picture in the blog said, “It’s okay to be skinny. It’s okay to be big.” This blog definitely challenges the concepts we have been discussing throughout the semester. Week after week, we’ve discussed Latina bodies and Latina body image in depth, and this blog does a good job to push this discussion even further. This blog portrays that the bodies we see in the media are NOT an accurate representations for all Latinas.

    It also discusses how, although there is extreme outside pressure on girls to feel a certain way about their bodies and pressures to change certain things that do not fit the mold, it is still okay to embrace whatever body you have and to love yourself.

    I really liked many aspects of her blog. She has fashion-based posts where you can find tips and ideas for plus size girls and promotes plus size fashion designers. She also has anti-bullying posts and a lot of information on positive self-esteem and creating a positive self-image.

    I believe it’s important for all girls, not just Latinas, to read blogs similar to this so we can continue to break the mold of stick-skinny beauty and to become accepting as a society of all body types!

  12. rserreti says:

    The blog that I chose to write about is the blog http://healthybeafit.blogspot.com/. In this blog, it includes healthy meals and workouts that people can do at home as well as at the gym. Although this blog was written by a Latina woman, I felt that the blog challenges and complicates what we have been discussing all semester. From looking at this blog, you cannot tell that this is written by a Latina woman. She talks in proper English and seems very educated. From some of the class discussions, it has been discussed that some Latinas talk in “slang” and do not use proper English.

    When reading this blog, Bea uses Facebook so people can read her blog and for it to be well-known. Although she does use Facebook to promote her blog, it is a very personal blog. She shows some of her personal favorite recipes as well as includes pictures. She also talks about what she does throughout the day and some of the workouts she does on daily basis. Although this blog is written by a Latina woman, it is not noticeable at all. This goes to show that they are the same as Caucasion women and that they should not be stereotyped the way that they are.

  13. violettaorlowski says:

    Latinos in the US (http://www.latinosintheus.org/) is my blog of choice. Out of all the hundreds of pages of blogs dedicated to fashion, cooking, working out, etc., this one struck my eye because of how different it was. The description of the blog stated “What truly affects and inspires Latinos living in the U.S. We have a unique experience”, making me want to click on it to learn more because I wanted to read something outside of what we typically see.
    This blog aims at educating people and informing latinos as well as non-latinos about issues that are going on in America that affect them. It also highlights inspiring people in the Latin community to be proud of and learn more about. Reading through the blog I noticed many posts about immigration in regards to the presidential campaign as well as many articles about presidential candidates so voters can be more informed. I thought this was refreshing to see because it breaks the typical stereotypes of things we might see and shows us how the Latin community is educated and interested in what is going on in terms of politics, besides just focusing on fashion and sex appeal.
    Many other blog posts focused on informing others of unfair treatment towards the Latin community in regards to racial profiling in the city of L.A. This blog reaffirmed the unfortunate way some Latinos are treated due to stereotypes of being criminals.
    Other blogs that were interesting were ones that focused on Latina actresses such as Lupe and also the Mexican Film Festival. These blogs celebrated the hispanic culture and focused on positive things that the Latin community has to offer.
    I really liked this blog because it offered something different to people. There are millions of blogs about fashion and cooking but not as many about politics and the news, and this blog focused primarily on that. It did not use twitter or facebook but instead relied on sources such as newspapers and online articles.

    • Kiara Morales says:

      I stumbled upon this blog as well, I thought it was great. It was certainly one of its kind as all of the ones that I looked thought were dedicated to anything but politics! These are very important issues and I was glad to have seen this blog. I especially liked the post about a a lot of latino voters being independent as oppose to voting democrat or republican. These are important issues to talk about especially when the political climate is as such, with immigration, as the blog also talked about.

      • morgan radin says:

        I also enjoyed this blog but throughout it brought to mind similar stories to that of CTlatinonews. I understand that the format and some of the topics are different, but do you both think that there are any commonalities? I believe that these two sources could learn a lot from each other. Specifically in the worlds of marketing, story details, and topics covered.

  14. Katie Blake says:

    In the blog that I chose, Empirically Erin (http://www.empiricallyerin.com/) is a married Latina woman, with a cute dog named Bronx, who is a native of Maine but spent 10 years in New York City where she said that she found herself before returning to Maine to be closer to her family. She has her Bachelor’s in Political Science then went on to get another degree in International Affairs and Diplomacy. Erin details her everyday life in this blog, and created it to prevent boredom while she’s unemployed, or funemployed as she calls it, and trying to be a domestic housewife, even though she hates cooking and cleaning, to getting back into the workforce.
    Though I found this blog on a Latina blogs website, I feel that any woman could relate to this. She talks about her love for her state of Maine, her husband, and just everyday experiences. I didn’t see any of the common stereotypes that Latinas supposedly have according to the media.

    In one blog post, she says that what drew her to blogging was that to her it was a place of happiness and free of hate. However, months later she discovered that not every post is free of hate and some people still bring racism into blogging. Later in the post, she talks about her own experience of racism: “In high school, I was the target of racist remarks that I was told were just jokes. In college, I also saw racism in action through incidents that happened to my close friends. In one of my first jobs out of college, I was told to “take off my Hispanic hat” and try to be like the rest of my white co-workers in the room so that we could better make progress.” It’s sad to see that even though she doesn’t embody the stereotypes that people attach to Latinas, people still target her for being a Latina.

  15. Kiara Morales says:

    A blog from the directory that I found fascinating was: http://myfamilylivingwithautism.blogspot.com. This particular blog was clearly quite family oriented, and documented how the family dealt with having a son with autism. I felt that the blog was very strong in that it provided a look at the inner workings of a family that was dealing with the importance of education and living, and learning the value of being a family.

    The blog was powerful for me because it was not just the typical latina family values that are often disseminated in the media, for instance how we often see, beauty, food,laundry,household duties as the means of talk . But this mom is dealing heavier things that pertain to education and health, all ultimately all brought together by the bond of a family.This reminded me of how we explored family dynamics that are often expressed with latin values, often times we associate family as a very important element. Throughout the semester we have seen this theme in many of the movies/music we have studied.

    • violettaorlowski says:

      I’m glad that you chose this blog. As a psychology major, my future plans revolve around working in the field of abnormal psychology/austism spectrum disorder so this was interesting to read. I enjoyed seeing how a family from a hispanic heritage deals with these issues and how it has made their bond stronger, showing a positive image of latinas and latinos.

      • morgan radin says:

        I agree with your response, it is almost refreshing to see a positive representation of a Latina family. I wonder what could be done to create more positive depictions of Latino families along these lines. Would they all come about in this way? Lastly, is there a way in which non-Latinos can aid in this breakthrough of representations? If so, in what ways?

  16. sorlyz says:

    I choose the blog GisGlam (http://gisglam.blogspot.com/). The author of this blog is a 19-year-old girl from Panama. Her blog is completely in Spanish and focuses on beauty, make-up, and fashion. She also has body image and health posts. The author also uses other medias such as Twitter and Bloglovin.

    This blog does not reaffirm or really target any stereotypes of Latinos. In fact, it is mostly targeting women as a whole. It focuses on body issues and make-up techniques. I guess the only thing I can relate this blog to our class is the way that she focuses on make up and body image. In one blog post, on August 17, she has a picture posted of 6 lip glosses. She talks about how they are great lip glosses and how they are a rare brand in Panama. On closer examination, I noticed that the 4 of the 6 lip glosses are a shade of bright red. Could it be because Latinas are supposed to have red lips if they are to be seductive, tempting Latina?

    • This extensive use of red lipstick does sound like a stereotypical Latina woman. You could relate this article to our discussions on Modern Family and how Sofia’s beauty contributed to her role in the show.

      • morgan radin says:

        I completely agree with you Jeremy; we have seen this same trope depicted again and again. I think it would have been interesting to spend some in class time exploring the world of red and costuming of red clothing as it relates to Latinas. We examined this minimally through Sofia Vergara, and my groups class project about costuming in Latina music videos also helped, but this issue of ‘red’ seems to keep popping up for Latina celebrities. I am almost embarrassed to ask, however I wonder; what do costume or makeup designers think when they place models or actresses in this particular color?

  17. Ernie Abreu says:

    The blog that I chose was the Natalie Martinez blog (http://therealnataliemartinez.com/). This blog is about a working mother, who is teaching her daughter to love the world around her. Through her blogs, she tells and documents every significant moment of her daughters life. From the first time her daughter, Elena, rides her tricycle, to mother and daughter drawings, this could all be found in this blog. While I browsed through the blog, I noticed that Natalie is very into her heritage and her family. She created a piece that described her family roots, her family’s characteristics, and how her family heritage has impacted the person she is today and the person that she wants her daughter to become.

    What I like most about this blog are the memories that are established. The story about Elena first tricycle is an example of these memories. The story consist of a scrapbook of lots of pictures of Elena in her tricycle, smiling and having fun. She also added a message with a deep meaning to it. She wrote and I quote “remember to always find time to play”. This is a message that she writes for her daughter for when life gets the best of her, she can look back at this message and find time to play to ease her mind. Right now, Elena is two years old. Natalie’s blog is a memory that she wants to leave to Elena, so she knows that she was loved when she was two. Natalie will keep posting stories about her and Elena’s life and one day, when Elena grows older, she can look back at the evidence of her childhood.

    The blog also directs the viewers to different way of obtaining Natalie’s stories. She has a facebook account which she encourages people to like, as well as a twitter feed, where she posts her more immediate responses about her life. She also uses both English and Spanish in her blog, which also shows her practicing her heritage. I did not find any information about the common stereotypes associated with Latinas that we have learned throughout the semester in her blog. In fact, in her blog description, she mentions that she is teaching her daughter about the man-made and woman-made world. I applaud her efforts, because at the end of day, this is both a man’s and woman’s world.

  18. The blog I chose is entitled “Cine Latino” and it is about anything Latina in regards to Hollywood and movies. (http://www.movies.com/movie-news/cine-latino-archive) The article I found most interesting is called “20 Hispanics Who Have Conquered Hollywood.” It is interesting to note that number one on this list is Salma Hayek, who we talked extensively about this semester through Ugly Betty and Frida Kahlo. At the bottom, there is a fun fact that states, “Executives repeatedly told her she didn’t have a chance in Hollywood.”

    This immediately made me think of the Ugly Betty episode in which Salma gets engaged in order to help her succeed, then ending the engagement on a talk show on live television. Just like people doubted her in the show due to her being a minority, people also doubted her in real life. Some other Latina women who were also mentioned in this article that we also spoke about in class are Jennifer Lopez and Eva Longoria.

    • sorlyz says:

      I was looking through the Cine Latino blog and stumbled upon an article of Sofia the Firs, the newest Disney princess. I was glad to see that many people were blogging and posting about Sofia with less aggression. Some people were saying that it is great that Sofia is light skinned and not the typical dark skinned Latina.

      On a different note, I have seen a bit of Sofia the First and I am curious as to why she is adopted. If she is Latina she can only be royal if she was adopted? I don’t have an answer but I hope someone does.

    • morgan radin says:

      Wow! What an interesting point to consider! I take the more negative perspective on the princess as a whole. I honestly did not know that she was an adopted child. It is interesting therefore to question whether this is a reflection of her Latino biological family, or whether this is to reach out to a population of adopted children. Because it is Disney, rather than PBS, I imagine it is because they need to maintain a white, upper-class, role or character within some part of the show. Either way, I am really glad that you brought this up!

    • morgan radin says:

      Now bear with me considering this idea, but I wish that instead of it being Hispanics that conquered Hollywood, it should be titled, “20 Latino/a Who Have Conquered the D.C.” I thought that it would be more interesting to open up this idea to a further range than just Hollywood. Similar to how the group working on unknown famous Latinas is doing. Hollywood Latinas is such a small spectrum and it does not do justice to those who are making great strides for the Latino community around the United States.

  19. Mariah Monroe says:

    The changes going on in New Media are constant and continuous. To say that things stay the same on even an annual basis would be a lie. A blog I found interesting is known as Anna’s Mirror (http://blogsbylatinas.com/2012/11/annas-mirror.html).

    Anna is a young Mexican-American college graduate with a BA in Marketing. Her blog touches on all things fashion, from current styles to timeless classics. I find it interesting that a young passionate female took what was just a pastime and has turned it into quite a hobby. I believe it may even be creating some work opportunities for her as well. Her blog reaches hundreds of thousand of people across the world.

    Through various outlets like Facebook, Tumbler, and LookBook, Anna has created her own little company of sorts. By using her marketing degree to her advantage, she had created a platform that markets clothing, makeup, style ideas, and herself!

    Anna’s passion for fashion sheds a positive light on young Latinas that are working hard to create a name for themselves, all while breaking out of the degrading stereotypical molds the media has created.

    • Kelvin Li says:

      I think this is a great blog because she definitely knows how to market herself. The design of the blog and the sexuality that you get from the page. As a male, I am more likely to look thought he website because of her pictures and it drives me to her page. This is one marketing technique that she’s smart to use. Because she is going to attract the female audience because she provide fashion tips. But she also wants to attract males as well, so what does she do? I also think it’s good that she makes her blog bilingual. It plays off the fact of her race and that is smart because you expand to a wide range of cultures instead of limiting yourself to one. This girl is very smart in creating her blog and she definitely put the time and effort to do so. I can see how much passion she has and how many people she would like to inspire.

    • morgan radin says:

      Do you think that there is a better way to bring this sort of media surrounding Latinas into a more widespread audience? It is always good to shine some light on positive representations, as you said but I am not quite sure that a fashion blog is the way to do it. If she were writing, or if it were more academic based would that get her more attention? Would this more distinguished group even care about her work?

  20. Lindsey Honig says:

    I personally had never seen the “Chonga Girls” video before we watched it in class. It has obviously garnered a lot of attention and praise, but there is also some scrutiny surrounding the two young women’s production. Some people may lament that is perpetuates stereotypes of Latinas, even if they are doing so in a joking manner. I personally tend to give people the benefit of the doubt and don’t want to assume anyone is creating something to be hateful or insensitive. Additionally, the two actresses identify as Latinas themselves, so they can be understood to be parodying a certain type of Latina, but not necessarily all Latinas.

    An interesting point I raised in class is that usually it is more acceptable for people of minority backgrounds to make fun of their own people. For example, Chris Rock includes Black humor in his stand-up and comedian Jo Koy (often featured on Chelsea Lately) often tells stories about his Filipino family. As a Jewish person myself, I am usually okay with other Jews making such jokes. However, it also makes it difficult to tell when it is acceptable for other people to do so. Where is the line drawn? Is it not offensive for two non-Latinas to appear in an extremely similar video on MadTV just because it is for entertainment purposes? I think the answer lies somewhere in the definition of the audience. If the audience is comprised of relatively educated or mature people who will pick up on the satire and sarcasm, it is less dangerous. However, if the audience is more vulnerable to internalizing the stereotypes, the humor is not always worth a cheap laugh.

  21. morgan radin says:

    I found Colorlines.com very interesting. This sites goal is written by a multi-racial news reporting team that focuses on not only spreading news focused on race, but also action that can be taken to solving our worlds societal issues. I particularly like the page entitled ‘war on women.’ It took a more global perspective on issues regarding rape, genocide, and inequality within both society and government policy.

    I am finding through this class that I enjoy media forms that are based one hundred percent in fact. Particularly in the world of news. Their organizational system and structure of the website helps to add to this idea of constructional thought and political insight. I most likely would never have found this news source and know am very glad that I did.

  22. morgan radin says:

    I further explored the wide variety of blogs on the blogsbylatinas page and found some very serious patterns. Now obviously, this page is devoted to blogs, which tend to be more opinion based and less factual. They focus on beauty, fashion, and overall tips. As well as fantasy dream purchases (tumblr, pinterest)! Especially blogs like, http://blogsbylatinas.com/2009/10/latin-glamorista.html and, http://blogsbylatinas.com/2009/10/mama-latina-tips.html .

    I believe that this compilation is actually very beneficial. However, I feel that this is just another form of the youtube channel that we discussed in class. Also, in my opinion, it is very similar to ctlatinonews in the level and types of stories told. In most of my recent blog responses I have called upon and questioned my fellow students on what can be done to legitimize the news and imagery being created surrounding Latinas depiction. In this last and final post I would like to ask Professor Castille what he believes can be done and what is the best course of action.

  23. Skylar Smith says:

    With technology growing at such an incredible rate, new ways of connecting with people are emerging through blogs and other forms of social media. I found the blog http://thewiselatinaclub.com/ which is a news blog written by a Latina. It has links to a lot of social media including twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest, etc. This site is mostly in English, like the articles, etc. but they use Spanglish in titles which helps attract different kind of viewers. This blog was voted by blogsbylatinas as one of their favorite news blogs for 2012. The blog takes a more personal way of dispersing news as sometimes “I” is used and so on throughout the article. The blog takes on issues in politics but also fitness, food, etc.

    The blog does a great job relating with its readers because of the personal approach they use. The authors use personal opinions as well as facts to help get their message across. Links are provided at the bottom that Latinos may be interested in like, “Fox News Latino,” and so on. The articles directly relate and grab the attentions of readers because the topics are news that they can relate to.

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