Black In Latin America

 The “Black in Latin America” Series on PBS

The series will air over four weeks on Tuesdays, April 19 and 26 and May 3 and 10, 2011, at 8 p.m. (ET) on PBS stations. Check your local listings for time and channel. Here are PBS’s descriptions of the series.

Episode 1: Haiti & the Dominican Republic: An Island Divided

In Haiti, The Root Editor-in-Chief Henry Louis Gates Jr. tells the story of the birth of the first-ever black republic, and finds out how the slaves’ hard-fought liberation over Napoleon Bonaparte’s French Empire became a double-edged sword. In the Dominican Republic, Gates explores how race has been socially constructed in a society whose people reflect centuries of intermarriage, and how the country’s troubled history with Haiti informs notions about racial classification.

Episode 2: Cuba: The Next Revolution

In Cuba, Gates finds out how the culture, religion, politics and music of this island are inextricably linked to the huge amount of slave labor imported to produce its enormously profitable 19th-century sugar industry, and how race and racism have fared since Fidel Castro’s communist revolution in 1959.

Episode 3: Brazil: A Racial Paradise?   

In Brazil, Gates delves behind the facade of Carnival to discover how this “rainbow nation” is waking up to its legacy as the world’s largest slave economy.

Episode 4: Mexico & Peru: The Black Grandma in the Closet  

In Mexico and Peru, Gates explores the almost unknown history of the significant numbers of black people — the two countries together received far more slaves than did the United States — brought to these countries as early as the 16th and 17th centuries, and the worlds of culture that their descendants have created in Vera Cruz on the Gulf of Mexico, the Costa Chica region on the Pacific, and in and around Lima, Peru.

If that synopsis does not encourage you to watch this series, here is a link to a brief segments that will.

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