One example of a well known Nicaraguan Afromestizo is the poet Ruben Dario (1867-1916). As one of the greatest poets in the history of Latin-America, he played an important role as a leader in the literary movement called modernism. He became world famous for his poems Blue (1888), Profane Prose (1896) and Songs of Life and Hope (1905). Dario (Felix Ruben Garcia Sarmiento) was born in the town of Metapa of mixed native, African and European ancestry. For more information on Dario’s African heritage see Sex and Race (Vol. II) by J.A. Rogers (1942). Dario was not unlike millions of Afromestizos in Central America, who simply know they are of a “mixed race” background and often have little specific knowledge of their highly diverse “blood lines”. At the age of 19, Dario moved to Chile and dabbled in journalism. That year he also wrote his first novel, Emelina, which was unsuccessful. Nevertheless, his poetry received praise in competitions. In Chile, Dario was confronted with prejudice and racism due to the dark complexion of his skin, compared to that of the European influenced Chileans. Despite his disillusionment and despondency, Dario continued to be prolific in his writing and published some of his more popular works such as Azul, “Otonales”, and “PrimerasNotas”.
[SOURCES: http://www.english.emory.edu/Bahri/Dario.html, http://www.bjmjr.net/afromestizo/nicaragua.htm]
The cop watcher
Jose LaSalle helps protect young black and Hispanic men from what he says are unreasonable stop-and-frisks
Jose LaSalle works for New York City’s parks department. By day, he walks around the Bronx and in the neighborhoods of Brownsville and Harlem with his crew of cop watchers, hoping to protect young black and Hispanic men from what he says are unreasonable stop-and-frisks by police.
"Basically, I am patrolling the police just like the Black Panther Party did in California in the 1960s. I just traded the shotgun for a digital camera," says LaSalle, 43, who carries his cellphone with him in hopes of catching a stop-and-frisk on camera. Two years ago, LaSalle’s stepson, Alvin, became a hero to stop-and-frisk opponents when he used his iPod to record the sounds of three cops who stopped him, accused him of "looking suspicious" and handcuffed him. LaSalle gave the recording to a filmmaker, who turned it into a short documentary that went viral.
Usually, LaSalle gives his phone number to young men he meets on the street, and sometimes they call him: “Yo, Jose. The cops are working some kid over here. Come over.”
LaSalle shows up, walking around the neighborhood with his camera, letting the police know that someone is watching. Other times, he receives complaints from residents who say they can’t leave their homes for fear of an officer slamming them against a wall. LaSalle marks the locations of complaints on a map, designs a route for his patrol and starts recording when he sees a cop approaching a young man.
November 29, 1972: Video Game Pong Is Released
On this day in 1972, American game manufacturer Atari, Inc. released Pong, which became the first commercially successful video game to gain mainstream popularity. Allan Alcorn designed Pong as a training exercise under the direction of Nolan Bushnell as co-founded Atari. The game featured a ball that players bounced between two paddles using manual knobs.
Find out more about the evolution of video gaming and test your knowledge with The Video Game Revolution’s ultimate classics quiz.
Photo: Pong, Rush N’Attack, Astro Fighter and Frogger (Rob Boudon/Wikimedia Commons)
Black Dada (Ian Berry, couple dancing, independence celebration Congo, 1960),2008 | Adam Pendleton