Latino-American Series to Conclude With Presentation on Samora Legacy Project Archive

Film and discussion events funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities

The final installment in a series of events focused on Latino-American history, sponsored by the University of Missouri-Kansas City University Libraries, will include a presentation and discussion of the Samora Legacy Project Archive housed at the university in the LaBudde Special Collections. The program will feature guest speaker Geoff Samora, son of Dr. Julian Samora, who is considered one of the founding fathers of Latino studies in the United States.

“Latino Studies: The Founding and The Future, Exploring the Samora Legacy Project Archive” is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday April 21 at the Jeannette Nichols Forum, UMKC Miller Nichols Learning Center, 800 E. 51st St., Kansas City, Mo. Miguel Carranza, Ph.D., Director of Latina/Latino Studies at UMKC, will be the discussion leader.

This event is free and open to the public, but advanced registration is required and is available at

The event is the final installment of a series of four discussion events hosted by University Libraries in collaboration with faculty in the UMKC Latina/Latino Studies program. The series, Latino Americans: 500 Years of History, is made possible through a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Library Association (ALA), and is part of an NEH initiative, The Common Good: Humanities in the Public Square.

The first three discussion forums included a showing of a chapter from the six-part Latino Americans: 500 Years of History film series. The full series is available online at

“Latina/Latino Studies is especially pleased to work with University Libraries to provide an opportunity to reach out to the Latino community and the general public through this NEH grant,” said Carranza. “The unveiling of the Samora Legacy Archive will highlight a unique richness residing on our own campus.”

“We are delighted to be able to continue our partnership with the NEH to bring important historical perspectives to our community, and provide opportunities for a rich and enlightening discussion,” said Bonnie Postlethwaite, dean of libraries at UMKC. “We are especially pleased to include an opportunity for the public to learn about the Samora Legacy Archive. These archives provide valuable insight into the Latino experience; and its goal is to ensure that the Latino heritage is known and understood by both scholars and future generations of the Latino community.”

UMKC is one of only two institutions in Missouri, and 203 nationwide, to be included in the Latino Americans project by the NEH.

Also free and open to the public will be a mini-symposium featuring student research by members of the UMKC Latino American Student Organization. The symposium will offer a day of traditional arts, research presentations, and a book presentation of Transcendental Train Yard by Norma E. Cantú and Marta Sánchez. The event is from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 22 in Room 325 of the Miller Nichols Library. Some of the students have been conducting research for almost two years on the traditional arts in Kansas City, thanks to a grant from the University Research Board; last spring they presented their findings in San Francisco at the National Association for Chicana and Chicano studies and in Jefferson City at the Missouri Folklore Society Conference. Some of these same students are doing research that will be presented at this year’s National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies conference in Denver.

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