public historian code switching between the academy and el pueblo

Who Am I?

My name is Shakti Castro and wiselatinamedia.com is the place to connect with me and my work.

I am a writer, activist, and community historian.  A Bronx-born Boricua, my work is focused on oral and public history, the Puerto Rican Diaspora, New York City, and transnational identity. I love literature and film, and Beyoncé (I really, really love Beyoncé). I am quite a prolific tweeter.

I’m currently an MA candidate in the Public History program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. After working at the Center for Puerto Rican Studies for four years, I decided to hone my skills as a researcher and public historian in grad school. My work at Centro involved a great deal of work on oral history, and here at UMass I am continuing that work and adding to it. My hope is to become a culturally competent museum professional, and to contextualize Puerto Rican history as an important part of American history as a whole. As well as being a researcher and oral historian, I’ve contributed writing and done some editing for the online magazines  La Respuesta and Warscapes.

I wholeheartedly believe in community. If you are interested in any of the work I’ve done, and/or are interested in connecting with other academics, writers, and activists in these fields, just shoot me an email. I believe as intellectuals (both inside and outside of the academy) invested in marginalized histories, it’s particularly important that we help each other whenever possible.

#wiselatinahustle is my hashtag, and what I use to connote work I’m doing to pursue my goals of being a Puerto Rican academic, and an academic for Puerto Ricans. Also, while my interests lie heavily in cultural archiving and community organizing within the Puerto Rican Diaspora, I’m very glad to connect with other Latinos, Black folks, and other members of marginalized communities. None of this work exists in a vacuum, and solidarity is vital.

One thought on “Who Am I?

  1. Hello Shakti,

    Based on who I follow on Twitter, Twitter recommended I follow you as well.
    I am a Boricua-Dominicana mix, born in Manhattan and raised in Queens. When I attended Hunter College I got to learn about and frequent el Centro and it was at Hunter where I took Latina feminism classes and Puerto Rican and Dominican cultural identity ones as well.
    I’m a mother of 2 and write when I can. Like you, I believe in community and in connecting with other like-minded individuals (and not so like-minded too!) Thank you for the opportunity to comment and introduce ourselves here, feel free to contact me, take care!
    Tennille Astor

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