[Video] This Incredible Ted Talk Touches On The Everyday Stereotypical Roles Latinos Are Required To Take In Hollywood
Ted Talks have grown in demand due to their refreshing, informative, and exciting topics and speakers. Whether we’re learning about scientific, cultural, political, and academic matters, it is the speaker that brings these topics to life. We especially like when we hear from extraordinary Latinas including Pia Mancini, an activist and technical project leader from Argentina, Isabel Allende and a Chilean writer who spoke about passion. Last week’s speaker touched on a topic that many Latinas could relate to.
America Ferrera gave a Ted Talk and discussed how representation in the media ultimately brings an “extraordinary richness of humanity.”
On April 19, Ferrera was among several speakers at the Session 12 of TED2019 held in Vancouver, Canada. The actress, activist, and director addressed the audience and spoke about who her identity as a Latina of Honduran descent seemed at first to be her obstacle, but she slowly realized it meant more than that.
“My identity is not an obstacle — it’s my superpower,” she said.
The “Superstore” actress said she had to break through the mold of portraying stereotypical roles.
Ferrera said she didn’t want to play the “Gangbanger’s Girlfriend” or “Pregnant Chola #2” but instead more complicated roles.
“I wanted to play people who existed in the center of their own lives, not cardboard cutouts that stood in the background of someone else’s,” she says, “Who we see thriving in the world teaches us how to see ourselves, how to think about our own value, how to dream about our futures.”
She added, “In spite of what I’d been told my whole life. I saw firsthand that my ‘unrealistic expectations’ to see myself authentically represented in the culture were other people’s expectations too.”
Ferrera said that Hollywood is more inclusive of minorities, but it’s not enough.
Even though her breakthrough role in “Real Women Have Curves” has launched more diverse characters in Hollywood, she says there’s still so much work that needs to be done.
“Change will come when each of us has the courage to question our own fundamental values and beliefs,” Ferrera said, “and see to it that our actions lead to our best intentions.”
We love the picture of Ferrera’s baby watching her speak during the Ted Talk. She captioned the photo by saying, “My baby boy watching me deliver my talk yesterday at #ted2019 – Thank you @ted for inviting me to share my truth and a message I believe in with my whole heart. #TheFutureIsWatching.”