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Ashley Steel's Blog (30)


This is my final blog post with Latinitas, and I wanted to use it to say a big thank you to the Latinitas community! I have learned so much from all of you, and enjoyed being an “honorary Latina” for a semester. Thanks to those who participated in discussions on my blogs, and took the time to read my work. I’ve made so many friends through this organization, and had the opportunity to teach so many terrific girls.

For those of you who are new to Latinitas, I recommend the organization…


Added by Ashley Steel on May 2, 2013 at 2:48pm — No Comments

From Tex-Mex Gringa to Fully Latina: My Summer Abroad in Argentina

              I grew up thinking I was a little Latina. I knew elementary Spanish, and I believed that salsa (the spicier the better) was way cooler than sliced bread. I tried to put cilantro on everything, even when wildly inappropriate, and my skin would tan darkly under the Texas sun. When I grew old enough I realized that I was in fact, very typically Caucasian, and my Spanish accent would have me pegged for a gringa before I could complete the word “Hola.” I was disappointed, but…


Added by Ashley Steel on May 2, 2013 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Expanding the Latina Identity: Asian Latinas

            On paper, Cecilia is an ordinary Latina. She was born and raised in Peru, given a common Latin Catholic name, and raised speaking Spanish. Her eyes and hair are long and dark, and yet when Cecilia—now a UT student—attends a Latino sponsored party, she is the only one who fails to receive the standard greeting. Instead of cheek kisses and Spanish, she gets a hand shake and English.

                Cecilia is set apart by the fact that she is Chinese. Her dark eyes are almond…


Added by Ashley Steel on May 2, 2013 at 1:30pm — No Comments

Fully Clothed Superheroines?


Before & After Transformation

This semester, many of…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 27, 2013 at 1:30pm — 1 Comment


Hey Ladies,

Have you ever thought about starting a business, or embarking on another costly adventure? If you have, then you’ve probably realized that doing so involves saving your money, possibly taking out loans, transferring money between accounts to make payments, and acquiring insurance. It’s a lot to think about! Here in America we are lucky to have banks and insurance agencies available to help us do these things, assuming we meet some basic requirements. In many parts of the…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 18, 2013 at 2:57pm — No Comments

Perilous Professions: Sandra Rodríguez Nieto

                                                                 Journalist, Sandra Rodríguez Nieto


                When many of us reflect on our dream career, we tend to focus on the rosier aspects of it: the prestige, importance, creativity, or fun that’s involved. However, sometimes an innocent career comes with very perilous consequences.…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 18, 2013 at 10:30am — No Comments

Replacing Beef with Guinea Pig?

             Have you ever eaten a guinea pig? If you live in the US, chances are you haven’t, as guinea pig is still a relatively new culinary trend, but it’s possible you’ve had one as a pet. However, in Peru and Colombia guinea pig is a longtime popular delicacy, a trend that is growing worldwide.  

                Known as, “cuy” this delicacy is typically grilled or deep fried, and served spread down the middle, much in the manner of a lobster.  Proponents of this dish are…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 13, 2013 at 1:51pm — No Comments


Hey Ladies,

Do you ever find yourself switching from one language to another, say English to Spanish, as you think, speak or write? This is called code-switching, a phenomenon often experienced by multilingual persons.

However, today a much broader conversation is being had about code-switching. It looks at the ways we speak differently in our professional lives, with our parents, our friends, a specific group, etc. We may be saccharine, proper, and compliant on the phone with…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 9, 2013 at 7:22pm — No Comments

105 Stars You Never Knew Were Latino

Actor David Gallagher (L)


               It’s not always easy to determine whether or not a person is Latino. With the mix of European, African, and Asian populations found throughout Latin America, increased globalization and immigration,…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 9, 2013 at 1:08pm — 1 Comment

Growing Diversity Amongst US Hispanics-“Not Only Mexicans”

A new Brown University study has come out with the surprising results of over 10 years of data collection tracking trends within the Hispanic, or Latino community in the US. The study looks at everything from national origins, to socio-economic background, regional dispersion, levels of integration and separation from the mainstream community, and neighborhood quality.

The report can be found in full…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 9, 2013 at 12:58pm — No Comments

Study Help

Hey Girls,

I’ve got two important tests at the end of this week. Yikes! As a senior in college, you would think that I know all the best ways to study, but it turns out, I don’t.  

I’m a creature of habit, prone to the same methods of studying I’ve always used. I put myself through the torturous process of reading and note-taking, and then I proceed to go over my notes again and again in my head. Though I usually do fine on my tests, my study methods aren’t conducive to…


Added by Ashley Steel on April 2, 2013 at 1:34pm — No Comments

Girl Up

Hey Ladies,

When I was a teen, I was constantly inspired to change the world. Unfortunately my dreams of helping people would continually die every time I realized that I had no idea where to begin. I lacked the connections, financial backing, and time away from school to devote myself to many of the problems that existed. I had no notion of business or politics, but I cared deeply about the issues at hand.

Recently I read an…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 31, 2013 at 6:00pm — No Comments

What's Holding Women Back?

I thought THIS NPR INTERVIEW was a very interesting follow-up to many of the women’s history month discussions going on at Latinitas. It features Facebook COO and mother of two, Sheryl Sandberg talking about the…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 21, 2013 at 1:00pm — 7 Comments

The Sizzling, Spicy Latina


As I was researching Latin band reviews during SXSW I kept encountering a common description: “sizzling sound,” “hot beats” and “spicy” over and over and over again. Recently one of my friends made a facebook post in which she stated, “I wish I were Latina…because then I’d be hotter.” The language surrounding Mexican food reviews is no different either, hot and spicy. The women are smokin’, saucy temptresses; the…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 19, 2013 at 2:00pm — 4 Comments

Austin Music Awards 2013

On Wednesday I had the privilege of attending the Austin Music Awards on behalf of Latinitas. From the dichotomous balance of denim and cowboy boots to its gold and glitter glam, Austin pulled out all of its traditionally charming looks, while proving (once again) why it is the live music capital of the world! With a huge selection of artists, and award categories, the AMAs resembled a much more casual, funky version of the Grammys.

Of particular interest to me were the…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 16, 2013 at 9:53pm — 2 Comments

Can Only Latinos Play Latino Roles?

Picture: Ben Affleck as Tony Mendez in the feature film "Argo"

Recently an Oscar winning film, “Argo” has come under criticism for its portrayal of a Latino character with a non-Latino actor. (Though this movie is rated R, and may not be appropriate for you if you are below the age of 18, I will only reference age-appropriate Latinitas…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 12, 2013 at 3:30pm — 2 Comments

Feminism: What is it? Is it still relevant?

What does being a feminist mean to you?

Being a feminist strikes me as a rather loose term. There are so many different labels that can be ascribed to feminism that it seems almost as disjointed and ill-defined a group as say, Republicans or Democrats. In other words, Republicans are a unified political party with a flexible message and values. This allows for many types of Republicans to exist (Tea-Party Republicans, Religious Value Voters, Old-School…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 7, 2013 at 4:59pm — No Comments

The BEST Thing About Being a Woman

What is the best thing about being a woman?

This is a question that I have a weak, and fairly inconclusive answer to. Mostly, I’m left wondering the same thing: What is the best thing about being a woman? It’s not that my lack of an answer stems from the belief that women have nothing of value to offer, or that in and of themselves, there is nothing inherently great about being a woman. But what is it that distinguishes and defines the female sex on such a…


Added by Ashley Steel on March 5, 2013 at 2:30pm — No Comments

Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Passes Congress

BIG NEWS ladies!

Violence against women is a gruesome and widespread issue that plagues our country. While many organizations can afford to be loud about the issue in an order to see some resolve, other more personal stories often go unheard. Many women suffer silently under the roof of an abusive partner, while many more keep quiet about rape, to name a few such stories. It’s not always easy to escape the situation, the fear, or the memory. Though the problem has not been solved,…


Added by Ashley Steel on February 28, 2013 at 3:00pm — 3 Comments

Should Schools Teach Coding?

         I’ve been recently lamenting the fact that my knowledge of coding is limited to a “basics of computer information systems” class I took in high school. Though much of my life doesn’t require me to be versed in HTML, I have begun encountering more and more situations in which it would be helpful. Take for example, my job as an editorial intern here at Latinitas. When submitting articles to the online magazine, there is a disconnect between the way a file is viewed when uploaded by…


Added by Ashley Steel on February 26, 2013 at 3:00pm — 1 Comment




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