Afro-Colombian Community Leader Francia Marquez
The night will feature two brief (20 minutes) documentaries filmed by the community's youth about the impact of displacement and racism in Colombia. Followed by open discussion about shared situations of the African Diaspora and how it pertains to the black/afro-descendant populations in the US.
Francia Marquez is a leader from the Afro-Colombian gold-mining community of La Toma in southwestern Colombia. Home to 1,052 families, La Toma was founded in 1636 by enslaved Africans who fought for their freedom. The community continues to defend their lands and cultures while struggling against political, economic and armed forces looking to control their lands and resources. Francia makes up part of this struggle. Through her work as a community leader and as part of Procesos de Comunidades Negras (PCN), she has striven to protect La Toma's ancestral lands from plunder, violence and dispossession, despite being identified as military target by paramilitary groups and receiving death threats that seek to drive the people of La Toma from this land.