This year marks the 175th anniversary of the birth of the man for whom Hostos Community College was named. Born in Puerto Rico on January 11, 1839, Eugenio María de Hostos excelled in many fields, including literature, sociology, education, jurisprudence, and philosophy.
With Hostos175 the College will commemorate the life and work of Eugenio María de Hostos by hosting lectures, workshops for students and faculty centered on curriculum integration, conferences, and civic and cultural holdings with distinguished leaders, scholars and artists beginning in March through the end of 2014.
The intention of Hostos175 is to highlight the work of this illustrious educator, who was committed to the social, political, and the cultural development of society with the goal of justice and equality for all. We will reflect on the richness and diversity of Hostos’ own intellectual and ethical pursuits and bring to light his many significant contributions to Latin America, the Hispanic Caribbean, and Latinos and Latinas throughout the world.
President of Hostos Community College Félix V. Matos Rodríguez notes “The real possibility of creating stable republics, with citizens who were ready to incorporate the most innovative ideas of the time for the benefit of industry, good governance, and the arts, was the goal that inspired Hostos’ educational theories.”
Some Hostos175 highlights are:
March 19, 2014 / Inaugural Lecture
-Presented by Dr. April Mayes Associate Professor of History at Pomona College
“Hostos (and the Woman Question) Women in Santo Domingo: A Consideration of Gender and Nation Building in Hostosian Thought and Practice.”
March 28, 2014 / Open Forum / Hostos: The Man, The College, The Bronx
-Presented by Professor Emeritus Gerald Meyer, Hostos Archivist William Casari, and Hostos
scholar Professor Orlando J. Hernández. Coordinated by Professor William Casari and sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning. Professor Emeritus Gerald Meyer will discuss the history of Hostos Community College; Archivist William Casari will examine the College’s connection to the Bronx; and Hostos scholar Professor Orlando J. Hernández will discuss Hostos’ accomplishments as an activist and author.
April 10, 2014 / Dramatic Reading Competition/ Hostos Literary Works
-Readings from Hostos’ literary works as part of the English Club’s Dramatic Reading Competition and performed by Hostos students. The event is coordinated by Professors Maya Sharma and Christine Hutchins.
April 28, 2014 / Lecture & Workshop / Hostos Legacy / Teaching Hostos at Hostos
-Presented by Hostos scholar Professor Roberto Mori, University of Puerto Rico retiree.
November 2014 / Young Hostos / Hostos Repertory Company Fall Production
-Written by Michael Torres and directed by Hostos student Abe Rasheed. Young Hostos is a play based on Hostos’ early life and writings. Produced by Professor Ángel Morales, Artistic Director of the Hostos Repertory Company.
November 2014 / Hostos175 International Scholarly Symposium
-The Hostos175 International scholarly symposium will outreach to bring together scholars to read and present alternative interpretations of Hostos’s work. It will explore such topics as Hostos and race, gender, religion, history, freemasonry, education, philosophy, inter-american relations, transatlantic exchanges, democracy, and civil society.
The proceedings will appear in the College’s academic publication The Hostos Review/ Revista Hostosiana.
Proposals for presentations (250 words maximum) are welcome and should be submitted with a CV to Professor Ernest Ialongo at firstname.lastname@example.org by May 1, 2014.
The events catalogue for Hostos175 will continue to unfold and be announced through the year and all events are open to the public.
About Eugenio María de Hostos
Born in Puerto Rico, Eugenio María de Hostos (1839-1903) was a 19th-century humanist, revolutionary, and author who traveled extensively and spent most of his life in exile. He made major contributions to education in the Dominican Republic and Chile. He was also an exemplary figure for the New World societies: an activist who fought for human and national rights at a time when these were hardly acknowledged as fundamental values; a committed abolitionist; and a staunch advocate for the recognition and enfranchisement of marginalized groups: women, Chinese, Native Americans, mestizos, and peoples of African ancestry. All of this made him a champion for inclusiveness and one of the most powerful voices for diversity in the Hispanic world.
Hostos’ views on education are worthy of note for their visionary character. His pedagogy was student-centered and based on scientific and rational methods of teaching that included observation, experiential learning, reasoning, and critical thinking. It brought to teaching the motivational theory of learning as well as an awareness of the relevance of context.
Hostos was an early promoter of offering scientific education to women, while in Chile in 1873.
In the Dominican Republic, in the 1880s, he founded teacher schools for men, and with Dominican poet Salomé Ureña, he opened a normal school for women. He also supported the establishment of kindergartens and created evening schools for workers in that country. As Dr. Félix Matos Rodríguez, President of Hostos Community College, points out, “His educational legacy in the Dominican Republic earned him the affection and respect of generations of Dominicans that has endured to this day.”
Hostos also worked tirelessly for the independence of Cuba and his native Puerto Rico. He was in favor of Latin American unity and supported the creation of an Antillean confederation of independent states. For his important contributions to Latin America and Caribbean countries, Hostos was conferred the title “eminent Citizen of America” at the 8th Pan American Conference in Lima, Perú, in 1938.
About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique “Student Success Coaching Unit” provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services.
Hostos offers 29 associate degree programs and five certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to CUNY’s four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of The City University of New York (CUNY), the nation’s leading urban public university, which serves more than 480,000 students at 24 colleges.