Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Barrio Writers @ The Magoski Arts Colony

Currently, my students are writing essays about local social issues.  This morning, I showed a video I'd made, in which some friends and I from The Magoski Arts Colony read excerpts from and discussed a local publication called Barrio Writers.  Here's the video:


After watching the video, I had my classes form groups and discuss the following questions about it:

1.) What is the purpose of Barrio Writers?

2.) What was the main point of the poem "I Still Have a Dream"?

3.) What are some of the struggles of undocumented students in Orange County?

4.) How can writing and art address social problems?

5.) Which poem was your favorite?  Why?

6.) Discuss this quote: "What I like about art and writing is the beauty that comes out of struggle."

The discussion was very fruitful and proved a helpful way to talk about the struggles of these student writers.  One of the things that creative writing can contribute to conversations about social issues is to give specificity and a human voice to what can become distant, abstract debates.  Barrio Writers shows us the unique voices of smart, passionate students still struggling to find their American dream.


After making the video and sharing it on Facebook, I was able to get in touch with Sarah Rafael Garcia, the director/editor of Barrio Writers, and now we have together planned a special release party and live reading for the third edition of Barrio Writers at Hibbleton Gallery in the Magoski Arts Colony in Fullerton.  The event is Friday, April 26th from 6-9pm.

The way this whole event came together shows me the power of creating and sharing to bring people of diverse backgrounds together.  Here's a local television program I found about the first issue of Barrio Writers, in which some of the writers discuss their work:


Hope to see you on April 26th!  Click HERE to find the facebook event!

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