Arkansas PBS > Engage > Pressroom > Henry Louis Gates Jr. uncovers Latin America's roots in new four-part series 'Black in Latin America' premiering April 19 on AETN

Henry Louis Gates Jr. uncovers Latin America's roots in new four-part series 'Black in Latin America' premiering April 19 on AETN

Posted 15 Apr 2011

“Black in Latin America,” the third of the trilogy “Wonders of the African World” and hosted by Henry Louis Gates Jr., will premiere on the Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN) Tuesday, April 19, at 8 p.m. and air in four parts April 19 and 26 at 8 p.m. and May 3 and 10 at 7 p.m.
“Black in Latin America” examines how Africa and Europe came together to create the rich cultures of Latin America and the Caribbean often associated with music, monuments and sun. “Black in Latin America” features Brazil, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Mexico and Peru, each with its own secret history.
During the Middle Passage, 12.5 million Africans were shipped to the New World. While just over 11 million survived the arduous journey, only about 450,000 of them arrived in the United States. The rest – over 10 and half million – were taken to the Caribbean and Latin America and kept in bondage far longer than the slaves in the United States. This astonishing fact changes the entire picture of the history of slavery in the Western hemisphere and of its lasting cultural impact. These millions of Africans created new and vibrant cultures, magnificently compelling syntheses of various African, English, French, Portuguese and Spanish influences.
Starting with the slave experience and extending to the present, Gates unveils not only the history of the African presence in six Latin American countries through art, music, cuisine, dance, politics and religion, but also the very palpable presence of anti-black racism that has sometimes sought to keep the black cultural presence from view.
The companion website for “Black in Latin America,” features video of the entire series and interactive timelines for each of the countries focused on in the films, as well as commentary from Gates, the series’ executive producer, writer and presenter.
“Black in Latin America” is a production of Inkwell Films, Wall to Wall Media Limited and THIRTEEN in association with WNET.
The Arkansas Educational Television Network (AETN) is Arkansas’s statewide public television network that enhances lives by providing lifelong learning opportunities for people from all walks of life. AETN delivers local, award-winning productions and classic, trusted PBS programs aimed at sharing Arkansas and the world with viewers. AETN depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. For more information, visit, or follow the AETN blog at AETN is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro), and KETZ (El Dorado).