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Ancestral Reckonings: Why Your DNA Results Don’t Match the Records

May 25 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm


AFRORRIQUEÑES: Affirmation, Solidarity and Healing

May 25-27 2022 at Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center

A multi-day series committed to the continuous dialogue on Afrodescendencia produced by Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center


“Ancestral Reckonings: Why your DNA results don’t match the records”

Conversation and workshop with Melanie Maldonado Diaz, scholar, genealogist, and cultural organizer.

This workshop demystifies the racial triad (Spanish-African-Taino) proposed by colonial narratives and shows how record keepers were complicit in erasing Blackness from archival records in Puerto Rico.

Melanie Maldonado Díaz

Melanie developed the Lugares Históricos project, which highlights Black history sites in Puerto Rico. In 2018, she led a first-of-its-kind community tour of these ancestral spaces for African diasporic gathering and traditional practices and in 2019 began placing historical markers at these locations.

Melanie is committed to creating access, building commUnity, and helping families re-member the legacies of their ancestors. Her bomba research explicates women’s agency, the importance of textiles, genealogy, lineages of learning, songs as critical records, placemaking, and historic spaces of praxis.




Segundo Ruiz Belvis Cultural Center
4046 W. Armitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60639 United States
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