Latino History Documentaries

Sunday, March 27 by sameerah blue

Take a look at all of the unique aspects of Latino culture with these Latino history documentaries. Most of us outside of the Latino community know very little about Latino history. And most of what we do know centers around music and food. But tasty nibbles and hip rocking beats don’t even come close to tapping into the unique and diverse culture of the Latino community. Watching these Latino history documentaries you’ll get a short but powerful glimpse into the role the Latino community played in the Civil Rights Movement, sports and the political movements sprouting up throughout South America.

  1. “Chicano: The History of the Latino Civil Rights Movement” (1996)- When most of us think about the Civil Rights Movement, images of Martin Luther King, Malcolm X and JFK are probably the first things that come to mind. Most of us know very little of the Latino Civil Rights Movement that swept through the Southwest through the 1960s. This Latino history documentary details the struggles of Cesar Chavez and leaders of the Latino Civil Rights movement as they fought for farmers rights, the Latino vote and better recourses in Latin American communities.
  2. “El Beisbol: The Story of Latinos in Baseball” (2009)- From Orlando Cepeda, Juan Marichal,the late Roberto Clemente to A. Rod and Sammy Sosa, this Latino history documentary looks at the long history of Latinos in Americas pastime. Beginning in the 1950s, it documents how Latin Americans adopted baseball as their own when they came to this country, baseballs influence in Latin countries and the contributions that Latin Americans have made to the game.
  3. “From Son to Salsa” (1996)-If you’re a fan of Salsa and Latin music then this Latino history documentary is a must see. Through interviews with Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, and a hot of other Salsa greats this Latino history documentary takes you through Salas roots in the Latin community, the artists that have helped it rise to prominence and speculates of the future of Salsa music.
  4. “South of the Boarder” (2009)- Directed by Oliver Stone this Latino history documentary looks at social and political movements throughout South America through interviews with everyday people and seven Presidents. It also looks at how America sees it’s neighbors in South American and the misconceptions that often surround these countries.
  5. “Afro-Latinos” (2010)- This fascinating Latino history looks at how Latin and African culture collide and a large chunk of history that is left out of most of our history books. It explores how Spanish Conquistadors exterminated the indigenous populations of the Latin American countries they came upon and imported slave labor from Africa to pick up the slack. It also looks at how the fusion of culture effects the Afro-Latino culture today.
Do you like this story?