Juan Gonzalez’s Book-Turned-Film on Latinos Opens in NY

Award-winning journalist and author Juan Gonzalez wrote “Harvest of Empire” (Penguin Books), a sweeping look at the history of Latinos in this country and the U.S. role in creating the political and economic problems than has lead millions of Latin Americans to come to the U.S., in 1999.

Thirteen years later, the insightful book is required reading in dozens of colleges across the country and last year Gonzalez updated and revised it to reflect recent relevant events like the appointment of Sonia Sotomayor as the first Latina to the Supreme Court.

Now, the 416-page tome has been turned into a documentary by the same name, directed by Eduardo Lopez and Peter Getzels, which will play at the Quad Cinema, 34 W. 13th St., from Friday, Sept. 28, through Oct. 4.

Juan Gonzalez (Photo by Daily News)

“They never teach us in school,” Gonzalez says in the film’s trailer. “That the huge Latino presence here is a direct result of our own government’s actions on Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America over many decades.”

Veteran radio host Howard Jordan interviewed Gonzalez on his WBAI weekly show, The Jordan Journal, last week. To listen to the interview click here and select the show for Sept. 21, 2012.

Gonzalez, a long-time columnist for the Daily News and co-host of the nationally syndicated TV and radio program Democracy Now!, was a  founder of the Young Lords Party in the 1970s.

He is the winner of the George Polk Award for investigative reporting and has penned four books, including “News for All the People: The Epic Story of Race and the American Media,” co-written with Joseph Torres and released a year ago.

“The reality is that America is changing,” Gonzalez says. “By the end of this century, a majority of the people will trace their origin not to Europe but to Latin America.”

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