October 26 Latinxs and Public History: Tackling Controversy in Museums, Archives, and Alternative Spaces


October 26, 2017

The Graduate Center, CUNY

6-8pm, Room 9204

Tackling the role that public history methodologies can play in illuminating difficult history for Latino communities,”Latinxs and Public History: Tackling Controversy in Museums, Archives, and Alternative Spaces” builds on presenter Shakti Castro’s research at the Smithsonian Latino Center. Shakti will discuss the collections plan she developed for the National Museum of American History to assist in documenting the history of substance abuse, harm reduction, and drug policy reform in New York City’s Puerto Rican and Latinx communities.

Addressing questions such as: What is public history? How can public history methodologies enhance academic scholarship? What are the ethical and practical issues of documenting controversial or difficult history through objects and oral history interviews? How can we complicate the model of “celebratory history?” this event will explore alternative ways of documenting history outside of the archive.

About the presenter:
Shakti Castro is a public historian and the Communications and Community Engagement Coordinator at Boom!Health’s harm reduction center in the South Bronx. Previously, she spent four years at the Center for Puerto Rican Studies as a research assistant and oral historian. Shakti’s work focuses on the history of the Puerto Rican diaspora and understanding how Puerto Ricans and Latinxs have helped shape American cities. Her recent research explores issues around public health and urbanization in Latinx communities. Shakti holds a BA from Hunter College and a Master’s degree in History from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She recently completed a summer graduate fellowship at the Smithsonian Latino Center. You can find more about her work on her website, https://wiselatinahustle.com/ or follow her on Twitter: @medeaculpa.

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