March Artful Thursday: Erica Fletcher's "Marianismo"

In her new collection Women Who Live in Coffee Shops and Other Stories, award-winning author Stella Pope Duarte explores the lives of people living on the meanest streets of Phoenix. Many of the flamboyant characters—flashy divas, transvestites, prostitutes—are hard to miss as they strut through the lethal urban streets. Others—bag ladies, addicts, the undocumented—are invisible to those who don't seek them out. Winner of the University of California's Chicano/Latino Literary Prize, this new book reveals the hard-scrabble lives of a working-class Mexican-American community.

The author's presentation will be followed by Marianismo, a short but powerful documentary that deals with the cultural factors putting Latina women at a disproportionately high risk for contracting HIV/AIDS. Through interviews with HIV-positive Latinas and public-health experts, this unsettling film examines aspects of Latino culture that contribute to an AIDS rate that is eight times higher in Latina women than in white women. Marianismo was written, directed, and produced by University of Houston junior Erica Fletcher, who will be on hand to introduce and discuss the film.

A reception follows. This program is free and open to the public.
Tags: Arts


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