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Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards

Mex Talks Panel Returning Next Month To Explore Mexican Identity, Inspire Youth

Mex Talks will return Sept. 14-24 with a lineup of Mexican and Mexican American artists, thinkers and leaders. "It gives us a space to celebrate our culture and identity."

Anchor and executive producer of Latino USA on National Public Radio Maria Hinojosa at Mex Talks in 2017.
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LITTLE VILLAGE — Mex Talks, a speaker series highlighting Mexican and Mexican American historical contributions and cultural identity, will return virtually next month.

Latinos Progresando’s ninth annual Mex Talks is Sept. 14-24. It will feature a bevy of Mexican and Mexican American folks who will reflect on their shared identity and inspire change, said Maritza Guzman, the Little Village-based nonprofit’s development director.

The speaker series was born as a way to elevate Mexican and Mexican American contributions in the country over the past century and dispel the idea Mexicans are recent immigrants to Chicago, Guzman said.

“There is a rich cultural history and a lot of contributions from Mexicans that have made the city and the U.S. what it is today,” Guzman said. The series “showcases Mexican and Mexican Americans, their contributions, their stories to inspire future generations of Mexicanos and Mexicanas.”

“It gives us a space to celebrate our culture and identity,” Guzman said.

Mex Talks was launched in 2012. In years past, the nonprofit has hosted the series over the course of a day. Last year, Latinos Progresando pivoted to a virtual setting amid the pandemic. 

Credit: Provided
Top left to bottom right: Carmen Vergara Esperanza Health Centers, WBEZ Maria I. Zamudio, Jose Muñoz of La Casa Norte, and Berto Aguayo Increase the Peace during Mex Talks 2020 panel Next Generation.

This year’s four-part series focuses on history and identity and will take place over four sessions.

“Whether you are Mexican or not, we hope you leave inspired to learn more about our community because our community is full of diversity,” Guzman said. 

The lineup includes Ambassador Reyna Torres Mendivil, consul general of Mexico in Chicago; Chicago Tribune journalist Laura Rodriguez Presa; Luis Alberto Urrea, author of “The Devil’s Highway;” artist Roberto Sifuentes; Carlos Tortolero, founder of the National Museum of Mexican Art; and Pablo Serrano, artist and cultural worker; among others.

People can register for free online. Any donations will go towards the nonprofit’s programs.

Latinos Progresando hopes to return to in person in 2022.

Learn more about Mex Talks and register here.

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