The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center recognizes the civil rights and farm workers’ labor leader, César E. Chávez, with “A Tribute to Cesar Chavez: 2014.” It consists of two-day presentations of documentary films on the Mexican-American civil rights movement.
“What Would César Chávez Tweet?” opens the event with the panel discussion “Latinos and New Media,” which examines Latino-led campaigns and the effect that social media has had on them. Speakers include: Paul Chavez, son of César Chávez, Estuardo Rodriguez, Melody Gonzales and Aasil Ahmad. The panel will be held from 3:30-4:30 p.m. March 7 at the Holiday Inn Town Lake Sunflower Room 20. The panel will be followed by a reception at 5 p.m. Final remarks will be made by Paul Chavez and Estuardo Rodriguez at 6 p.m. at the Sam Z. Coronado Gallery.
Following the panel discussion will be documentary screenings. The first of the night is A Class Apart, directed by Carlos Sandoval and Peter Miller. It tells the story of Pete Hernández, who killed a tenant farmer, and the civil rights case that emerged from the murder in the small town of Edna, Texas in 1951. The hour long screening starts at 7 p.m. March 7 at the Black Box Theater.
The second documentary of the night is The Fight in the Fields: César Chávez and the Farmworkers’ Struggle directed by Ray Telles & Rick Tejada-Flores. The documentary tells the story of César Chávez, founder of the United Farm Workers of America, and his non-violent civil rights movement of the ‘60s and ‘70s that inspired farm workers to fight for their rights. The documentary runs for 116 minutes and will be screened at 8:30 p.m. Friday March 7 and Saturday March 8 at the Black Box Theater.
The final screening of the tribute will be Antonia Pantoja: ¡Presente¡ a film by Lillian Jiménez. The film recognizes the work of Antonia Pantoja, a Puero Rican educator, activist and early proponent of bilingual education. Despite the obstacles she faced as a black Puerto Rican woman, she founded ASPIRA, an organization that empowers Puerto Rican youth, as well as other leadership and advocacy organizations. The 53-minute film is in Spanish with English subtitles. It will screen at 7 p.m. March 8 at the Black Box Theater.
All events will be free and open to the public. The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center is located at 600 River St. The center is dedicated to the preservation, creation, presentation, and promotion of Mexican American cultural arts and heritage.