Monday, March 12, 2012

The Librotraficante Caravan on its way to Tucson

 [Editor's Note:  A chronological list of links to AICL's coverage of the shut-down of the Mexican American Studies classes is here.]


In a few hours, Tony Diaz's Librotraficante Caravan will be on its way to Tucson. The caravan consists of carloads of banned books Diaz calls "wetbooks" that his caravan is "smuggling" into Tucson for use by students who were in the Mexican American Studies courses that were shut down in January. Authors of the banned books are supporting the caravan by donating money and books.

In January when Diaz learned of the shut-down of the classes, he created the video below, describing the caravan. Since then, it has picked up steam and media attention. He was on Democracy Now! last week and the New York Times featured the caravan on its page of "interesting things to do this week" in Texas.

The Caravan will end in Tucson with a celebration. Along the way, there are terrific events planned where authors will participate in Teach-Ins. Below is a map of the journey. You can see the detailed schedule here.

Source: Librotraficante website

Sandra Cisneros will be at several events, and so will Benjamin Alire Saenz, author of the outstanding A Gift From Papa Diego that Jean Mendoza and I wrote about in Examining Multicultural Picture Books for the Early Childhood Classroom: Possibilities and Pitfalls.

Follow the caravan on Twitter using #Librotraficante.

Note (added on March 12, 10:20 AM):
You can support the teachers, students, and their on-going efforts to get the program reinstated by donating to Save Ethnic Studies.  
You can donate to Librotraficante's work. Though the caravan itself will end on the 17th, Librotraficante will continue its work at providing books to "Underground Libraries". 


Sydney Gurewitz Clemens said...

What a positive, remarkable idea this is, exactly to counter the anti-intellectual, anti-Latino move that has so shocked all people of goodwill.

It would be great if there was a way to contribute to this effort.

Debbie Reese said...

You can contribute, Sydney. I'll add a note to that effect in the post.

There's several options.