Saturday, May 28, 2005

Bolivian Rap

I was reading through the New York Times and I found an interesting article that reminded me of a hip hop article we read for my Latin American Studies class.

The article speaks of the indigenous people of El Alto, Bolivia where a burgeoning rap culture with a political message has been slowly growing. They criticize the injustice of the rocky political history of Bolivia in an attempt to inspire revolution and change within their country. It is especially interesting in this area because the rap culture (baggy clothes and what not) contrasts sharply with the traditional indian dress of the indigenous people.

Here is the article: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/26/international/americas/26bolivia.html

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Fernando Botero and Abu Ghraib

One of Latin America's most prominent, living visual artists, Colombian Fernando Botero, has produced a series of arresting, graphic portraits of the torture scandal at Abu Ghraib. The New York Times has published an article on this new work by Botero. Here's one example of Botero's Abu Ghraib portraits:


[Click here for an enlarged image of this portrait.]

The fact that Botero has considered himself to be an admirer of the United States drives the point home even more of how this torture scandal has damaged the reputation of the United States abroad. It amazes me how oblivious the U.S. public is to the rotten image that our country has crafted for itself across the globe because of the Iraq War and all its attendant nastiness.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Guide to the Perfect Latin American Idiot

Click here for a link at Amazon.com to a book titled, "Guide to the Perfect Latin American Idiot," that offers scathing 'insight' to the "idiotic" methodology of Latin America's leaders and people who, according to the authors, erroneously blame their region's problems on outside sources. If you go to the link you can actually read the first section by clicking on the book logo, and I HIGHLY reccomend doing so.

Overall, while I do feel that there are some people that resort to pointing fingers when it comes to Latin America's problems, the authors try to say that the U.S. among other nations and groups has never done any significant damage to Latin America's workings, which is completely false. Even more, just reading the first section, "The Family Portrait," provides more than enough proof that the authors are bitterly biased against Latin Americans...

There's really no point in explaining it all, because it's a few short and interesting pages long. Check it out and see if you agree or disagree.