National Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15 and ends on October 15. This month celebrates the people of Hispanic America. Also, September 16 is Mexican Independence Day. These 2 events are especially meaningful this year with the MVCC One Book, One College choice of Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant.
Check out this interview with our One Book author José Ángel N. from Illinois State University’s GLT in 2014 (see link below). José will visit Moraine Valley on September 15th and will speak in our library at 11am. This event is free and open to the public.
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Academic Adviser, Jeremy Kingery, discusses important academic policies for students. This session is especially important for new college students who are learning to navigate college for the first time. This event is part of the One Book, One College program.
This year’s One Book text is José Angel N.’s book Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant. When we first reviewed this book, we discuss the use of the word “Illegal.” Most people use the term “undocumented” which is less biased and accusational. Most advocates for undocumented immigrants point out factors that there are no legal methods for poor to immigrate in the US and that there are human-rights-related issues that make the discussion more complex than legal vs illegal.
Our One Book author José Angel N. uses this term on purpose to draw attention and make a point. When we selected this book, we had concern that by using the title, Illegal, on our website and marketing materials, our library would appear to be making accusations or taking a side within the debate. In the end, we decided that this book was too important, too well-written, and too powerful for us to ignore because of concerns over the work “illegal.”
If you are interested in a broader perspective on the use of the word “illegal,” take a look at this article from the New York Times magazine The Unwelcome Return of ‘Illegals’. This article puts the term in context with the presidential primaries that are taking place now.
The MVCC Democracy Commitment’s Faculty Coordinator, Tamarra Coleman-Hill sits down with Tish and Troy to talk about the Celebrating Latino Americans Program. These include a range of programs including author Ana Castillo, One Book Author José Ángel N., and NEIU’s Maria Luna-Duarte. Learn more at our website at https://latinoamericans.apps.morainevalley.edu/.
MVCC Humanities faculty member Dr. Randy Conner discuses his research into the mixing of indigenous spiritual practice and Catholicism in the Americas. He discusses the idea of mestizaje which is the mixing of cultures and practices. He also discusses biculturalism which is living in two cultures at one time. This exploration of religious practice is part of our Celebrating Latino American programming. Learn more at our website at https://latinoamericans.apps.morainevalley.edu/.
MVCC Librarians interview José Ángel N. who is the 2015-2016 One Book, One College author. His book Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant is the One Book text. In this interview, José shares his reasons for writing the book, reflects on his time as a Moraine Valley student, and discusses issues related to undocumented immigrants to the US. For more information visit the website at https://latinoamericans.apps.morainevalley.edu/OneBook.html.
MVCC Librarians review the 2015-2016 One Book, One College text, Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant by José Ángel N. For more information on the program, visit the website at https://latinoamericans.apps.morainevalley.edu/OneBook.html.
This video from Time magazine by Journalist Jose Antonio Vargas focuses on undocumented immigrants, which Vargas calls “the most misunderstood” issue of our time. You can read his Time magazine cover story in the library’s databases here: Not Legal Not Leaving. (cover story).
Author José Angel N. reads “The Jaguar’s Path” from the opening of his book Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant (University of Illinois Press).
In his book Illegal: Reflections of an Undocumented Immigrant, José Ángel N. courageously shares his world even though he cannot share his real name. His story takes us through wretched tunnels on the Mexico/U.S. border, to the back rooms of restaurants, to basic reading and math courses at Moraine Valley, and to corporate America. But mostly, his story takes us on an up close and personal exploration of the emotional turmoil and contradictions involved with living as an undocumented immigrant in the United States. Through hard work, José Ángel N. found his American dream but is not able to fully embrace its benefits.