Latina roles in the media haven’t changed since… well, since there were roles for Latinas in the media. Although Latinas are more than deserving of their time on TV, these roles have perpetuated the stereotypes and stigma for the entire Latina population.
The roles that portray us as exotic, hypersexual, voluptuous, ultra-feminine, spanish-speaking or submissive run rampant in the media — think the likes of Sofía Vergara, Roselyn Sanchez and Lupe Ontiveros — and are similar to how Latinas are perceived in real life.
In her article “6 Harmful Myths About Sex and Latinas,” poet and writer Erika Sanchez says the affects go further than that, “Unfortunately, this pigeon-hole doesn’t only affect the way others perceive us, it also influences the way we view ourselves. Even knowing that these portrayals are ridiculous, some of us may also fall into the trap. The media is that powerful.”
And those established roles leave no room for roles about real Latinas, especially from the LGBT community.
Read more about these long-standing myths from Salon here.