Pierce Library invites you to join us in celebrating Latino/a/x Heritage Month!
Each year, the United States of America observes "National Hispanic Heritage Month" from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures, and contributions of American citizens and noncitizens from--or with ancestors from--Mexico, the Caribbean, Puerto Rico, Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period starting on September 15th and ending on October 15th. The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September 18, respectively.
Latino (or Latina) is defined as "a person of Latin American descent residing in the United States." This is not to be confused with Latin Americans, which refers to the people actually living in Latin America presently. Federal policy defines “Hispanic” not as a race, but as an ethnicity; it prescribes that Hispanics can, in fact, be of any race. The term "hispanic" was adopted by the U.S. government in the 1970s to give people from Latin America a common identity. However, "hispanic" refers to Spanish-speaking countries, and therefore excludes a big part of the region—namely Brazil, which is Portuguese-speaking. The emerging terms of "latinx" or latine are recommended as a gender-neutral approach to include trans, queer, and other non-binary identities.
Below, you will find books and other resources that celebrate and explore various Latino/a/x cultures and histories.