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News Release

October 7, 2021

Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month

In celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, College of the Canyons will host the 2021 Latinx & Hispanic Heritage Cultural Journey virtually from October 11 to 15.  

The weeklong virtual celebration features 16 sessions with students and faculty leading poetry readings, Spanish literary readings, panel discussions, film screenings and musical performances.

“I am very excited about the sessions as many of them relate to the contributions of women, indigenous and Afro-Caribbean identities,” said Dr. Claudia Acosta, chair of COC’s Modern Languages and Cultures Department. “This is what we do every day when teaching language and culture. We create imaginary cross-cultural spaces to learn about each other as we appreciate the richness, colorful and vibrant culture.”

A screening of the documentary “Antojología de Carl Rigby” is scheduled for 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 11. The Spanish, Creole and English film portrays two years of conversations, poems and monologues of Carl Rigby Moses (1945 – 2017) considered one of the pioneers of NiCaribbean spoken word poetry. Acosta will lead a virtual discussion with Maria Jose Alvarez Sacasa, a photographer and filmmaker, after the screening.

The short film “Beyond Barriers” will be screened at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 12. Directed by Santa Clarita resident Laura Carlson, the film demonstrates how people from opposite sides of the Arizona-Sonora border come together despite economic, health care, and political barriers to create a center of wellness and hope.

The festival’s sole in-person event, “The Mirabal Sisters: A Story of Resistance and Courage,” will be held at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 12 in Bonelli Hall, Room 14. COC professor Lucia Pozo will speak on the tenacious courage demonstrated by the three Mirabal sisters during the dictatorship of Rafael Trujillo in the Dominican Republic.  

Also on the schedule is the musical presentation “Two Musical Traditions: Sanjuán and Cuban Rumba” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14. A discussion of the indigenous and Afro-Caribbean musical traditions will be led by Dr. João Junqueira and Jay Gravatt of Vento Sur (CalArts Alumni Quartet).

In addition, Santa Clarita Sister Cities and the General Consulate of Ecuador in Los Angeles will be presenting “Tena and Canela: A Jewel in the Amazon” at 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15.

The event is open to the public, and organizers invite the community to participate via Zoom. 

The 2021 Latinx & Hispanic Heritage Cultural Journey is hosted by the college’s Department of Modern Languages & Cultures, the School of Humanities in collaboration with the Sigma Delta Mu, and the Office of Inclusion and Diversity.

For more information about the event's lineup, please click here.