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Black In Latin America: Mexico & Peru: The Black Grandma In The Closet

Airs Tuesday, May 10, 2011 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Radio station, Mexico

"Black In Latin America," a new four-part series on the influence of African descent on Latin America, is the latest documentary film from renowned Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates, Jr., presenter and writer of the acclaimed PBS series "African American Lives" (2006), Oprah’s "Roots" (2007), "African American Lives Two" (2008), "Looking For Lincoln" (2009), and "Faces Of America" (2010).

Professor Henry Louis "Skip" Gates, Jr.
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Above: Professor Henry Louis "Skip" Gates, Jr.

Photo Gallery

View photos from Professor Gates' time in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Cuba, Brazil, Mexico and Peru.

Professor Gates’ journey discovers, behind a shared legacy of colonialism and slavery, vivid stories and people marked by African roots. He introduces viewers to the faces and voices of the descendants of the Africans in six Latin-American countries, who created these worlds. He shows the similarities and distinctions between these cultures and how the New-World manifestations are rooted in, but distinct from, their African antecedents.

A quest he began 12 years ago with "Wonders Of The African World" comes full circle in "Black In Latin America," an effort to discover how Africa and Europe combined to create the vibrant cultures of Latin America, with a rich legacy of thoughtful, articulate subjects whose stories are astonishingly moving and irresistibly compelling.

"Mexico & Peru: The Black Grandma In The Closet"

In Mexico and Peru, Professor Gates explores the almost unknown history of the significant numbers of black people — the two countries together received far more slaves than did the United States —brought to these countries as early as the 16th and 17th centuries, and the worlds of culture that their descendants have created in Vera Cruz on the Gulf of Mexico, the Costa Chica region on the Pacific and in and around Lima, Peru.

Interactive Feature

Timeline: Mexico & Peru

Above: A timeline of key events in Mexico and Peru's history.

Video

Series Preview: Black In Latin America

Watch the full episode. See more Black in Latin America.

Above: In "Black In Latin America," Professor Gates’ journey discovers, behind a shared legacy of colonialism and slavery, vivid stories and people marked by African roots. He introduces viewers to the faces and voices of the descendants of the Africans in six Latin-American countries, who created these worlds. He shows the similarities and distinctions between these cultures and how the New-World manifestations are rooted in, but distinct from, their African antecedents.

Video

Interview With Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Above: In "Black In Latin America," Professor Gates' journey discovers, behind a shared legacy of colonialism and slavery, vivid stories and people marked by African roots. He introduces viewers to the faces and voices of the descendants of the Africans in six Latin-American countries, who created these worlds. He shows the similarities and distinctions between these cultures and how the New-World manifestations are rooted in, but distinct from, their African antecedents.

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