LatinoLand: A Portrait of America’s Largest & Least Understood Minority
6:30 – 7:00pm – Registration & Networking
7:00 – 8:00pm – Program
About the event:
A sweeping yet personal overview of the Latino population of America, drawn from hundreds of interviews and prodigious research that emphasizes the diversity and little-known history of our largest and fastest-growing minority.
LatinoLand is an exceptional, all-encompassing overview of Hispanic America based on personal interviews, deep research, and Marie Arana’s life experience as a Latina. At present, Latinos comprise 20 percent of the US population, a number that is growing. By 2050, census reports project that one in every three Americans will claim Latino heritage.
But Latinos are not a monolith. They do not represent a single group. The largest numbers are Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Salvadorans, and Cubans. Each has a different cultural and political background. Puerto Ricans, for example, are US citizens, whereas some Mexican Americans never immigrated because the US-Mexico border shifted after the US invasion of 1848, incorporating what is now the entire southwest of the United States. Cubans came in two great waves: those escaping communism in the early years of Castro, many of whom were professionals and wealthy, and those permitted to leave in the Mariel boat lift twenty years later, representing some of the poorest Cubans, including prisoners.
As LatinoLand shows, Latinos were some of the earliest immigrants to what is now the US—some of them arriving in the 1500s. They are racially diverse—a random fusion of White, Black, Indigenous, and Asian. Once overwhelmingly Catholic, they are becoming increasingly Protestant and Evangelical. They range from domestic workers and day laborers to successful artists, corporate CEOs, and US senators. Formerly solidly Democratic, they now vote Republican in growing numbers. They are as varied culturally as any immigrants from Europe or Asia.
Marie Arana draws on her own experience as the daughter of an American mother and Peruvian father who came to the US at age nine, straddling two worlds, as many Latinos do. LatinoLand unabashedly celebrates Latino resilience and character and shows us why we must understand the fastest-growing minority in America.
Marie Arana will sign copies of her latest book ‘LatinoLand’ at the event.
About the speaker:
Marie Arana, Acclaimed Author & National Book Award Finalist
Marie is a Peruvian-American author of nonfiction and fiction as well as the inaugural Literary Director of the Library of Congress. She is the recipient of a 2020 literary award from the American Academy of Arts & Letters. Among her recent positions are: Director of the National Book Festival, the John W. Kluge Center’s Chair of the Cultures of the Countries of the South, and Writer at Large for The Washington Post. For many years, she was editor-in-chief of The Washington Post’s book review section, Book World.
Marie has also written for the New York Times, The National Geographic, Time Magazine, the International Herald Tribune, Spain’s El País, Colombia’s El Tiempo, and Peru’s El Comercio, among many other publications. Her sweeping history of Latin America, Silver, Sword, and Stone, was named Best Nonfiction Book of 2019 by the American Library Association, and was shortlisted for the 2020 Andrew Carnegie Medal of Excellence.
Marie Arana’s latest book Latinoland is a sweeping and personal overview of the Latino population of America, drawn from hundreds of interviews and prodigious research that emphasizes the diversity and little-known history of our largest and fastest-growing minority.
Her biography of Simón Bolívar won the 2014 Los Angeles Times Book Prize and her memoir, American Chica, was a finalist for the 2001 National Book Award. She has also published two prizewinning novels, Cellophane and Lima Nights.
About the moderator:
Jose Valera is a partner in the Houston office of the law firm Mayer Brown and member of the Global Energy group. He focuses his legal practice on domestic and international energy transactions and project development, with more than 30 years of experience.
Jose represents energy clients in a wide range of commercial agreements, including oil and gas exploration and production contracts, investment agreements, mergers and acquisitions, and joint ventures. In the power sector, Jose drafts and negotiates project development agreements for thermal and renewable generation projects. Jose’s LNG practice focuses on LNG liquefaction services, regasification services, development of regasification terminals, and purchase and sale of LNG.
Jose has counseled many governments on energy legislative reform matters, development of shared hydrocarbon resources, and privatization transactions related to the electric and oil and gas industries.
He has law degrees from both Peru and the United States, and is fluent in English, Spanish and French.