Hispanic Heritage Month – Cooking Up Culture

Pabellón, a Venezuelan dish made of shredded beef, rice, and black beans with sugar on top. They say that to understand a culture, you have to eat its cuisine. As we continue celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, we wanted to present a selection of different Hispanic cuisines. After all, many cultures can be categorized as "Hispanic" and they all have very different food. For example, traditional Mexican tacos are not common in Venezuela. Venezuela shares their love for arepas with Colombia, Guyana, and Caribbean nations but arepas are uncommon in Andean cultures. Peru's national…continue reading →

Hispanic Heritage Month

Each September, Hispanic-Americans across the country celebrate their Hispanic heritage. Whether born abroad or in the U.S., Hispanic Americans have added to the depth and richness of American culture. Hispanic Heritage Month runs from September 15 to October 15 partly because many Independence Day celebrations from different Hispanic countries occur during that time. Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Mexico, and Chile all celebrate their national independence during this time-frame. In contemporary literature, Hispanic authors like Juan Felipe Herrera, Alberto Ríos, and Sandra Cisneros express their love for Hispanic culture while also…continue reading →

Where Is It? Finding Books at the JTCC Library

Picture courtesy of Aimee-Leigh Bean Week 1 is done and Week 2 is halfway through. As you start getting familiar with how to use our library catalog, you may wonder “how do I find books on the shelf?” The John Tyler library uses the Library of Congress classification system. LOC uses a combination of letters and numbers to give the location on the shelf. The general topics within Library of Congress are very broad—the G section covers geography, oceanography, anthropology, sports, and folklore! That’s why there are divisions within each section. In general,…continue reading →
Poet Profile: Kwame Alexander

Poet Profile: Kwame Alexander

A native of New York, Kwame Alexander now lives in Northern Virginia with his family while he travels the world encouraging young people to write. His books, like The Crossover, have won awards both for their merit as poetry and as exceptional children’s literature. In an interview, he told NPR, “The power of poetry is that you can take these emotionally heavy moments in our lives, and you can distill them into these palatable, these digestible words and lines and phrases that allow us to be able to deal and cope with the…continue reading →
Hail to the Poet-in-Chief!

Hail to the Poet-in-Chief!

Anne Spencer, the subject of last week’s post, was a gardener and librarian before she was a poet. Another Virginian who wrote poetry for his own personal satisfaction was our very own John Tyler! Yes, the tenth president of these United States was noted for his love of poetry. While he never sought to publish his poetry, he wrote poems before, during, and after his days in the White House. Other presidents have tried their hand at poetry too. Barack Obama is one of the few presidents with published poetry. While in college,…continue reading →