Victoria Eugenia Santa Cruz Gamarra was an Afro-Peruvian choreographer, composer, and activist who is widely regarded as “the mother of Afro Peruvian dance and theatre.”
She lived from 1922 to 2004 and was one of the major players in the revival of Afro-Peruvian culture and Afrocentrism in Peru that took place during the 1960s and 1970s. In tribute of her impactful work, her poems, specifically “Me Gritaron NEGRA” (They Called Me Black) recited by young Afro-Peruvian and Afro-Ecuadorian girls have started to spread across the internet.
“Me Gritaron NEGRA” is a poem which follows Santa Cruz’s journey to accept and embrace her blackness, starts out with her telling the story of how at the a very young age started to shout “Negra” (the spanish word for Black) at her on the street everywhere she went. This shamed her into straightening her hair and wanting to lighten her skin but eventually she realized the beauty of her blackness and that the truth of this beauty was being hidden from her.
The original version of the poem recited by Santa Cruz is EXTREMELY powerful and might even give you chills.
What is even more powerful than the poem itself is that young Afro Latinas who are the age of Santa Cruz at the beginning of the story that she tells in the poem are now reciting the poem and the message is going viral. By reciting this poem at this young age, these girls, who are Black just like Santa Cruz, are able to take this woman’s story and find pride in it. They are able to put words to their struggles of living in a society with eurocentric beauty ideals and recite this peom as a reminder to themselves about how beautiful and strong they truly are.
Check out this video from Ecuador of a little girl reciting the poem.
Share this on Facebook if you think this deserves to go Viral!
Service6 days ago
6 Ways Black Fraternities/Sororities Can Work to Prevent Substance Abuse on Campus
AKAs5 days ago
Leadership Highlight: Paige Hodges the Basileus of Alpha Kappa Alpha at Howard University
Sigmas15 hours ago
Black Greekdom Mourns the Passing of Phi Beta Sigma Congressman Elijah Cummings
Leadership Highlight5 days ago
Leadership Highlight: Ngozi Ude the President of Zeta Phi Beta at Loyola University Chicago
Deltas5 days ago
Leadership Highlight: Ugochi Ejiogu the President of Delta Sigma Theta at The University at Buffalo
AKAs4 days ago
Leadership Highlight: Kingsley-Reigne Pissang the President of Alpha Kappa Alpha at University of Wisconsin-Madison
Leadership Highlight1 week ago
Leadership Highlight: Dawne Stanton the Basileus of Sigma Gamma Rho’s Eta Theta Sigma Alumnae Chapter in Silver Spring, Maryland
Omegas1 week ago
Omega Psi Phi’s Steven Reed Was Just Elected The First Black Mayor of Montgomery, Alabama