Identity, culture, and migration

Gilda: Roots

Gilda lying down

Where are your roots?
Wow. That’s a very strong question. My roots… I carry my roots with me, you know? It’s because I’m always thinking about my grandparents, and my parents. My parents brought me into this world. Also, they raised me and taught me many things. Also, I think of my grandparents and ancestors. This is a root. This helps me to continuously move forward by working. Wherever I go, I feel that my roots are with me. I carry them with me.

Blas: Martin Luther King Day March

Crowd holding signs

This picture is at a march on Martin Luther King Day. We went on a march for everybody. So many black people have been attacked recently by the police. They’ve been killed in other states and so we went on that march to keep them company. We’re part of them too, we march in solidarity with them because immigrants also get beaten up. I really liked this picture because when we were in front, I thought that maybe we were few. But then I looked back and I saw how many people were behind us. So then I raised my arm and took that picture.

Blas: Marching for Casa Latina

Demonstrators at march with sign

We went to that march because they are part of the community, so we can all move forward and we can all help each other. And maybe one day when it’s the workers day, they will also come and be with us so they can also support us, so we all support each other in the community. As you can see there are several of us here, there’s women, there’s men, some older, some younger, everybody joyful, keeping each other company.

Salomón: Helping Others

Picture of Salomon

The work that I am doing contributes to other people’s lives. I want others to see people who are not hiding but who can go show themselves. And also struggle and say ‘Yes we can,’ and prepare ourselves and work to take different type of actions because just having a job, or two jobs, or three jobs is not enough. You need to develop yourself as a person.

Salomón: The March

Demonstrators with sign

This is Casa Latina; it’s the demonstration, at the march. I see people, workers who get together every day with the purpose of getting a job, but also to contribute, to have the voices of each one of us heard. That it’s not just like people think that we are, that we’re here to take other people’s jobs. No, we want jobs and we want to contribute something.

Ventura: Home Is Wherever I Fall

Shelter at City Hall

I live at the shelter in City Hall, with people who also have nowhere to sleep… Ever since I arrived in Seattle, I have stayed there, on a mattress… Home is wherever I land, like the saying goes, where the night falls, the body falls as well.

Yo vivo en un albergue en la alcaldía, con otras personas que tampoco tienen dónde dormir. Desde que llegué a Seattle me he quedado allí, sobre un colchón. Mi casa, mi hogar, es donde caiga. Como dice el dicho, donde cae la noche, también cae el cuerpo.

Blas: Indigenous Roots

Blas and Native American Woman

Mexico is a country of many cultures and many languages. Take me, for example, I speak Otomi, from Queretaro. My parents were born there, but I was born in Baja California. So [seeing this woman as a Native American] made me think of my indigenous roots. So with a lot of pride we took this picture together.

Juan: One Single America

Indigenous Person

I feel like an indigenous person. I am an Indian in Canada, US, Mexico, Central America, and all South America - it is all the same continent. It is true I am from Guatemala and I am here in the US. But I am still in America. One single America. It is one same continent.

Juan: The Spanish Came To The Americas In Boats Like This

The Mayflower

This is the Mayflower. I took this picture because it made me remember that the Spanish came to the Americas in boats like this. The Spanish came and fought against the Guatemalan hero, Tecun Uman.

Éste es el Mayflower. Tomé esta foto porque me hizo recordar que los españoles vinieron a las Américas en barcos como éste. Los españoles vinieron y pelearon contra el héroe guatemalteco, Tecún Uman.