“We need to have this conversation”
This week, as Latinx and Hispanic Heritage Month continues, Grammy Award-winning Latin music pioneer Gloria Estefan, daughter Emily Estefan and niece Lili Estefan return for a new season of the Daytime Emmy-nominated series and at the Facebook Watch GLAAD Media Awards. Red round table: Les Estefans. Over the course of Season 2’s dozen new weekly episodes, all three generations of women will tackle important topics including plastic surgery, online bullying, the Surfside condominium collapse, and child abuse. And as the Estefans preview the series during an interview with Yahoo Entertainment & Life, Emily mentions a Red table discussion that she is particularly looking forward to.
“One thing that I’m really proud and excited about is that we are elevating and opening the door to the conversation about colorism and racism within the Latin community,” said the 26-year-old second-generation musician. “You know, families that have siblings whose skin tones and colors – some identifying as Afro-Latino, some not – and just that duality within the community of these things that we are. faced and difficult to talk about. “
“This are not spoken, ”Gloria intervenes.
“People say ‘mejorar la raza’, which is a terrible expression that implies that if your skin is clearer you improve your crop or something like that – and that’s something that has been said to years in families, and some people don’t even think about saying something because they don’t realize it, ”continues Emily. “So as three white Latino women, we don’t encounter a lot of struggles our Afro-Latino siblings have. And that’s really important, and I feel privileged to be able to use our platform to highlight conversations like this.
“It was one of those episodes that I hope people see and feel this bridge building within the community,” adds Gloria – who, as one of the most prominent Latinx celebrities in the world. United States over the past four decades has found its name and comments on its own skin color in the news cycle recently when Lin-Manuel Miranda’s film In the heights has been criticized for its lack of representation of the Black Latinx population.
“One of the things that really sparked my interest even more in bringing this topic up is [of colorism] at the table this time was when controversy started to erupt around In the heights – that one of the people who started this conversation online, their response was, “We’re not all Gloria Estefan!” “They literally called me because I’m lighter,” Gloria recalls. “But I got it, completely. I figured it out because I’m a very well-known Latina, and I have a certain appearance. My skin is white, you know, whatever. Although for many people they might assume that I am not White because I am latina! So it may have nothing to do with your genetics; the main thing is to label and put people in boxes. And the only thing when I read that … OK, even though I say, ‘Hey, I’m as Latina as anyone else’, I understood where it was coming from.
“A little Black Latina will not necessarily see herself represented in [Gloria]Emily remarks.
When asked if any of Estefan’s women have been accused of having career advantages over their darker-skinned Latinx peers, Emily immediately steps in. “I mean, I think we to do,», She answers bluntly. “I think we do. And that’s part of the reason we need to have this conversation. … I think we walk around with these privileges, and that’s why it’s even more important to use our voice, to talk about it … and there are also times where we’ve had, you know , times when people do not challenge us but simply educate us on the reality of certain experiences.
Cuban-American pop superstar Gloria, in particular, has had to deal with preconceptions about Latino artists since she started recording with the Miami Sound Machine in 1977, including the stereotype that all Latinx women are “stinging”, “inflamed” and overtly sexual. “Well, I never really thought about stereotyping my image of myself,” laughs elder Estefan, who turned 64 this month. “I like Pause stereotypes! You know, people would tell us, “You’re too American for the Latins. You are too Latin for Americans. … that’s why my favorite [fashion] the look was my leggings – because i was in jeans and leather leggings! She is not Latina in any way, shape or form! Plain white top, I let my curly hair fly, and it was awesome. People loved it.
“There was a moment there, which looks like: Look, for most people a Latina woman is Lili Estefan or Gloria Estefan. And I mean, yes they are Latin women, but Latin women come in all colors, all kinds of hair colors, shapes, sizes and textures, ”points out Emily.
“And different nuances and accents and different foods,” adds Gloria. “Especially now for Hispanic Heritage Month, I think it’s important not just to celebrate our similarity, that we are all Latinos, but for us to celebrate the beautiful cultural tapestry that we bring to this country, be it the Mexican west coast to the east coast here – Puerto Rican, Cuban, Dominican and everything in between. We have a lot to offer in different ways, and we need to celebrate these beautiful differences as well. “
Gloria’s niece, Emmy winner Lili Estefan, looks back on her long career and believes the entertainment industry has evolved for all Latinx women, an evolution that has led to a groundbreaking show like Red table. “The Hispanic market for so many years – like, it’s been 35 years already – I’ve seen the change,” the 54-year-old TV host said optimistically. “You know, it used to be more of a stereotype, but now we’re open. It’s totally different. I see the change, even on soap operas, or the way we deal with ourselves. It is going much better.
Red round table: Les Estefans Season 2 premieres September 30 at 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET on Facebook Watch. Upcoming guests include Clare Crawley (the first Latina Bachelorette), Becky G, Anitta, Ariel Winter, Karamo, Amara La Negra and Gabi DeMartino.
– Video produced by Kat Vasquez.
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