On this day, Feb.5, of 1992, Nicomedes Santa Cruz dies. I first heard of him while in Peru. He was a self taught intellectual whose formal education ended after elementary school. However, this Afro-Peruvians passion for Black music, dance, traditions, and culture took him to Brazil, Mexico, Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Panama.
He wrote and directed plays, radio and TV programs and wrote about 10 books. His focus was always to fight racism. He stated that when he wanted to get married his family did not approve because they wanted to “improve” the race. This was a term used then to say someone was too dark The kicker Santa Cruz was not a light skinned Black man as you can see. This became much of what would fuel his career, showing the beauty of Blacks people no matter their color or where they were from.
Brother Nicomedes Santa Cruz, we honor and salute you.
Nicomedes Santa Cruz: A Black Public Intellectual in Twentieth-Century Peru