Loud and Proud: Latinx Representation and Empowerment Against Censorship

Tue. Oct 3, 2023 6:30pm - 8:00pm EDT
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Event Description

Join NYPL & Latinx in Publishing for a live Banned Books Week x Latinx Heritage Month event about Latinx representation in publishing and and challenges around censorship and self-expression. Plus, pick up free books from the authors!

Seven percent of all authors in the US are Latinx, and about 40% of these authors face some form of censorship.  Representation is a work in progress, with just 6 percent of children's books featuring Latinx characters according to a 2020 study from the University of Wisconsin. Despite these challenges, Latinx authors continue to write their stories in their own voice, sharing their diversity, and representing their cultures loud and proud.

Everyone deserves to tell their own story on their own terms. Our featured panelists - Emanuel XavierMelissa Rivero, and Adriana Herrera - have all grappled with issues of censorship in writing and are stronger for it. Come hear their stories!

The panel, moderated by Bronx-based author and activist Charles Rice-González, will discuss the current climate of book bans and challenges, as well as the importance and joy of self-expression. The conversation will be followed by an audience Q&A.

And there's more: Plus, pick up free books by the authors! Giveaways books will be available first come, first serve. Limit four books per attendee. 

About the Speakers

Emanuel Xavier was born in Brooklyn and became involved in the ball scene as a homeless gay teen. Over a span of twenty-five years, Xavier has received recognition as a spoken word artist and has been named an LGBTQ Icon by The Equality Forum. Xavier has received an International Latino Book Award, Lambda Literary Award nominations and American Library Association Over the Rainbow Books selections for his collections. He is also editor of Me No Habla With Acento: Contemporary Latino Poetry, Bullets & Butterflies: queer spoken word poetry and Mariposas: A Modern Anthology of Queer Latino Poetry.  He founded the Penguin Random House LGBTQ Network and is on the Board of The Publishing Triangle.

Melissa Rivero is the author of The Affairs of the Falcóns and the forthcoming novel, Flores and Miss Paula. She won the 2019 New American Voices Award, a 2020 International Latino Book Award, and was longlisted for the PEN/Hemingway Award for Debut Novel, the Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, and the Aspen Words Literary Prize. Born in Lima, Peru and raised in Brooklyn, she is a graduate of NYU and Brooklyn Law School, where she was an editor of the Brooklyn Law Review. Melissa still lives in Brooklyn with her family.

Adriana Herrera is a USA Today Best Selling author and trauma therapist in New York City, working with survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Her Dreamers series has received starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and Booklist. Her debut, American Dreamer, was selected as one of Booklist’s Best Romance Debuts of 2019. Her third novel, American Love Story, was one of the winners in the first annual Ripped Bodice Award for Excellence in Romantic Fiction. Adriana is an outspoken advocate for diversity in romance and has written for Remezcla and Bustle about Own Voices in the genre. She’s one of the co-creators of the Queer Romance PoC Collective.

Charles Rice-González is a writer, community and LGBTQ activist, co-founder of BAAD! The Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance and an Assistant Professor at Hostos Community College. He serves as board chair for the Bronx Council on the Arts and the National Association of Latino Art and Cultures. Additional honors include a MacDowell Fellowship, a Lannan Foundation Fellowship, a PEN Writing as Activism Fellowship, the Lambda Literary Foundation's Dr. Betty Berzon Emerging Writer Award, a New York City Council award, the Men(cion) Award from 100 Hispanic Women, an Audre Lorde scholarship from the ZAMI Foundation, and a Gay City News Impact Award for his activism and contributions to advancing the lives of LGBTQ people.


Please be sure to register for an In-Person Ticket. Doors will open 30 minutes before the program. For free events, we generally overbook to ensure a full house. Priority will be given to those who have registered in advance, but registration does not guarantee admission. All registered seats are released shortly before start time, and seats may become available at that time. A standby line will form 30 minutes before the program.


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In-Person | Assistive listening devices and/or hearing loops are available at the venue. You can request a free ASL (American Sign Language) interpretation or CART (Communication Access Real-Time Translation) captioning service by emailing your request at least two weeks in advance of the event: email accessibility@nypl.org or use this Gmail template. This venue is fully accessible to wheelchairs.

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Please submit all press inquiries to Sara Beth Joren at least 48 hours before the event: email sarabethjoren@nypl.org or use this Gmail template

For all other questions and inquiries, please email adultprogramming@nypl.org or use this Gmail template

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Venue Details
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Bronx Library Center 310 East Kingsbridge Road
Bronx, NY 10458