By Laura Giacomini
From Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated in the United States. This can be your chance to research more into your roots and see whether you have any Hispanic ancestors and be proud of it. It is a good opportunity to ask a classmate, coworker, teacher, neighbor, friend or significant other about their home country’s culture and celebrate to help raise awareness about cultural diversity. It might also be a time to start wondering how US history was shaped by Spanish heritage and what its contribution is to this day.
According to hispanicheritagemonth.org, the month was enacted into law on August 17, 1988. The first day of Hispanic Heritage month coincides with the independence anniversary of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua from Spain. Mexico, Chile and Belize also celebrate their independence days during this period.
In Argentina, it is no longer called “Día de la Raza” (“Day of Race”) and is now called “Día de la Diversidad Cultural” (“Day of Cultural Diversity”). The rationale behind this change was to promote historical reflection and raise intercultural awareness as well as protect aboriginal peoples’ human rights. In the U.S., this day is called “Columbus Day.”
The celebration of this month in the U.S. gives the Hispanic community a chance to embrace their culture and share it proudly in a country that is now their home. It would be interesting if we all took part in this celebration in order to be more knowledgeable about Hispanic traditions and ways of life because, at the end of the day, no matter your nationality, we all share the same human values and love for our own culture.