Total Pageviews

Thursday, August 21, 2008



Color identity in Puerto Rico is nuanced. Its large historic mix of African, indigenous and Spanish is why some over the decades have referred to Puerto Ricans as the “rainbow people”. But how do Puerto Ricans see themselves and how wide, diverse and enduring is the rainbow, really? A new report challenges the notion of racial harmony in Puerto Rico. The latest in my series of reports on color around the globe.

Racial attitudes in Puerto Rico (8:30)
August 20, 2008 | download | permalink | email | Yahoo! Buzz

Color Initiative series
Your comments on this series


The Color Initiative is funded by the Ford Foundation, with additional resources provided by the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities and the Funding Exchange (Paul Robeson Fund).


Candelaria said...

I can't wait to see this because this issue resonates with me deeply.
My biological father is Puerto Rican, my mother is African-American. They divorced when I was 2 or 3. I have been raised on the African-American side and totally immersed in that culture for my 50+ years of life. I had not touch with him or the PR side of my family until 7 years ago.
My half-sister considers herself white although she doesn't look white. I consider myself Black. I've been asked if I was Puerto Rican, Dominican or Cape Verdean.
My Black aunts and cousins range in skin color from pale pink to deep brown.
Are you what you feel you are, what others tell you you are, what your name says, or what/how you choose to stand in the world?
In my experience, a lot of people who are Latino embrace their European heritage and try to suppress their African heritage. The famous Cuban poet, Nicolas Guillen, wrote a poem "And your grandmother, who she be?"
African-Americans and Latinos are made up of the same combination of African, Native, and European and it comes out in all sorts of glorious skin colors, hair textures, and facial and other physical features.

PWD MARTIN said...

Well check it out here and let me know what you think. It actually would have been good to have included your story in this report. It's compelling---thanks a lot..phillip

WGBH , PRI and BBC Announce a World-Wide Reporting Initiative Focused on Color

WGBH Radio, Public Radio International and the BBC have announced the launch of “The Color Initiative”, a landmark journalism project that will examine complex global issues of politics, culture, history and society through the framework of human perceptions and experiences related to color. Once complete, this on-going project will air on The World, broadcasting on WGBH 89.7, Mon-Fri at 4pm and 7pm. Feature Color Initiative stories reported from around the globe will be produced by Lifted Veils Productions, a Boston-based non-profit radio journalism organization dedicated to exploring issues that divide society. Former NPR supervising senior editor and NPR’s former Race Relations Correspondent, Phillip Martin, will serve as lead correspondent. He is also the Executive Producer of Lifted Veils Productions. Anthony Brooks, The World’s former senior producer and former national correspondent for NPR, is the Color Initiative series editor. The World’s Executive Producer is Bob Ferrante. The project is made possible by a grant from the Ford Foundation and the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities. “The establishment of an international editorial beat dedicated to covering color worldwide is the first of its kind, and places The World in a unique position in public radio in the United States and Britain,” says Marita Rivero, General Manager for WGBH Radio and Television. Among the topics that will be explored by the Color Initiative are: • COLOR AND IMMIGRATION: A FOUR PART SERIES • IRAQ’S WAR DEAD, AMERICA’S RESPONSE AND THE ROLE OF COLOR • CASTE, COLOR AND EDUCATION IN INDIA The first report in the year-long project looks at the on-going marketing campaign by Benetton, which mixes business with socially conscious messages focusing on diversity of all sorts, including color. Those messages are now coming up against growing anti-immigrant realities in Europe, including the dominant presence of the Northern League in the very Italian city where Benetton is headquartered: Treviso. That report airs in early November. About The World Winner of the 2006 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award for Broadcast News, The World with anchor Lisa Mullins has been bringing daily international news to local audiences for the past 10 years. Monday through Friday at 4pm on WGBH 89.7, the international staff of The World presents a mix of news, features, interviews, and music from around the globe. The World is the first international radio news program developed specifically for an American audience, giving listeners an upbeat and informed take on the day's events. Co-produced by WGBH, the BBC World Service, and Public Radio International, The World is heard on more than 200 public radio stations across the country. About WGBH Listener-supported WGBH 89.7 is Boston's NPR® arts and culture station. Bringing you the best for more than 50 years, 89.7 serves its wide-ranging audience with a menu of classical music, NPR news, jazz, blues, folk, and spoken-word programs. The station is an active participant in New England's vibrant music community, presenting more than 300 performances every year, including live broadcasts and remote recordings from such diverse venues as Tanglewood, the Lowell Folk Festival, the Newport Jazz Festival, and WGBH's own studios. WGBH 89.7 can be heard online anywhere in the world at, and can be heard on Nantucket at WNCK 89.5.