When the Peruvian-American writer and podcaster Daniel Alarcón won the prestigious MacArthur Genius Award last year his reaction may have come as a surprise to some. Alarcón, a novelist who created the award-winning podcast Radio Ambulante and writes for The New Yorker, talked about how he feels invisible.
“Because living in the United States and working in Spanish is being invisible, right?,” Alarcon told El País. “So, that this recognition comes to me, working in Spanish in the United States, in the current political moment, seems triply surprising to me. And another source of pride as a Latino in this country, as the son of an immigrant who grew up speaking Spanish at home.”
Journalists who work with Feet in 2 Worlds – who are immigrants or the children of immigrants – face similar challenges. Even though they play a vital role in bringing news and information to both immigrant and non-immigrant audiences, and in fighting misinformation, their contributions are often undervalued or ignored, especially by mainstream media.
Feet in 2 Worlds recently hosted a live conversation with three immigrant journalists about their work serving multiple audiences in both Spanish and English.
The conversation featured:
Maritza Felix, founder and publisher of Conecta Arizona in Phoenix, Arizona
Von Diaz, writer, documentary producer, and author in Durham, North Carolina
Catalina Jaramillo, staff writer, FactCheck.org, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
And was led by:
Zahir Janmohamed, Visiting Assistant Professor of English at Bowdoin College, co-founder of the Racist Sandwich podcast, and host of the first season of A Better Life? in Portland, Maine
The conversation was recorded at Feet in 2 Worlds’ Celebration of Immigrants in Journalism on January 31st, 2022.
Transcript available at the A Better Life? website.
A Better Life? and Feet in 2 Worlds are supported by The Ford Foundation, the John D. and Katherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the David and Katherine Moore Family Foundation, the Ralph E. Ogden Foundation, an anonymous donor, and readers like you.