My experiences are not Latina enough. There is a subculture within the subculture of Latino bloggers, painters and writers that I do not entirely fit into. I find myself forced to seek consolation in these groups, but have often found myself even more disappointed and isolated than before. When human beings create, they do not do so with only their cultural perspective in mind, but largely draw from their personal experiences. What a lot of subculture groups do is unknowingly create their own sets of standards to abide by. To preach how unique all Latinas are yet only praise those that fit the bill is extremely frustrating and hypocritical. If I am not writing about my diaspora, curly hair or urban hypebeast subculture, no one in the community wants to hear it. As Basquiat constantly stated, “I am not a black artist, I am an artist.” We must be able to see ourselves as humans first before our racial identity. Being accepted in your culture as an artist is extremely important, because whites dominate the art world for many socioeconomic and historical reasons.
To be fully accepted by neither the majority nor minority is the unfortunate reality for many children of immigrant parents. The group in control is constantly fighting to keep their power while the other groups are in a constant fight to control the way the world views them, because they are always portrayed in a negative light by the majority. The groups formed to support those shunned by the majority often also become groups that alienate once they have acquired a sliver of power.
Whether you are Black, Hispanic, Asian, etc., it is good to keep in mind that our culture is naturally ingrained in who we are. It is highly beneficial to learn more about your culture. I implore you to learn the beautiful language, music and food of your ancestors if you are not already familiar. And if are, keep learning because the U.S school system does not teach us so it is on us learn our history. Use these groups and communities to connect, learn and support each other. However, it serves no one when we try to mold ourselves to fit into a stereotype that was created by those in power. I am not just a woman with curly hair a quick witted attitude and rhythm. There are plenty of people that inspire me on a daily basis, many of whom aren’t Black or Latino. I refuse to become a big fish in a small pond. Let’s all swim together in the ocean and stop isolating other races and in turn also isolating our own. When creating your brand, don’t forget about your identity. Let’s not typecast ourselves, the rest of the world is already doing that without our consent.