Wednesday, September 28, 2011

moving video in need of subtitles

watch this gorgeous video, it will leave you inspired. maybe even inspired to subtitle?

Many thanks to Michael Joseph for the translation below - it would be great if someone were inspired to put this up as subtitles! good volunteer experience if you've never done it before. instructions here Let us know if you do it!

Soy, soy lo que dejaron, Soy las sobras de lo que te robaron,
Un pueblo escondido en la cima, Mi piel es de cuero por eso aguata cualquier clima,
Soy una fábrica de humo, Mano de obra campesina para tu consumo,
En el medio del verano, El amor en los tiempos del cólera,
Mi hermano!

I am, I am what was left behind, I am the leftovers of what they stole from you,

I am a town hidden on the peak, My skin is leather so it can handle any climate,

I am a smoke factory, Peasant labor for your consumption,

In the middle of the summer, Love in the time of cholera,

My brother!

Soy el que nace y el día que muere, Con los mejores atardeceres,
Soy el desarrollo en carne viva, Un discurso sin saliva,
Las caras más bonitas que he conocido, Soy la fotografía de un desaparecido,
La sangre dentro de tus venas, Soy un pedazo de tierra que vale la pena,
Una canasta con frijoles.

I am the one who is born and the day that dies, With the best sunsets,

I am development in flesh and blood, A speech with no saliva,

The prettiest faces I have ever known, I am a photograph of a disappeared person,

The blood in your veins, I am a plot of land that is worth it,

A basket full of beans.

Soy Maradona contra Inglaterra Anotándole dos goles.
Soy lo que sostiene mi bandera, La espina dorsal de mi planeta, en mi cordillera.
Soy lo que me enseño mi padre, El que no quiere a su patria no quiere a su madre.
Soy América Latina un pueblo sin piernas pero que camina.

I am Maradona against England, Scoring two goals,

I am what holds up my flag, The spine of my planet, along my mountain range

I am what my father taught me, S/he who does not love their country does not love their mother

I am Latin America, a people without legs but who walk

Tú no puedes comprar al viento,
Tú no puedes comprar al sol
Tú no puedes comprar la lluvia,
Tú no puedes comprar al calor.
Tú no puedes comprar las nubes,
Tú no puedes comprar mi alegría,
Tú no puedes comprar mis dolores.


You can’t buy the wind,

You can’t buy the sun,

You can’t buy the rain,

You can’t buy the heat.

You can’t buy the clouds,

You can’t buy my happiness,

You can’t buy my pain.


Tengo los lagos, tengo los ríos, Tengo mis dientes pa cuando me sonrío,
La nieve que maquilla mis montañas, Tengo el sol que me seca y la lluvia que me baña,
Un desierto embriagado con peyote, Un trago de pulque para cantar con los coyotes,
Todo lo que necesito!

I have the lakes, I have the rivers, I have my teeth for when I smile,

The snow that adorns my mountains, I have the sun that dries me and the rain that bathes me,

A desert drunk on peyote, a shot of pulque to sing with the coyotes,

All I need!

Tengo a mis pulmones respirando azul clarito,
La altura que sofoca, Soy las muelas de mi boca mascando coca,
El otoño con sus hojas desmayadas, Los versos escritos bajo las noches estrelladas,
Una viña repleta de uvas, Un cañaveral bajo el sol en cuba,
Soy el mar Caribe que vigila las casitas, Haciendo rituales de agua bendita,
El viento que peina mi cabello, Soy todos los santos que cuelgan de mi cuello,
El jugo de mi lucha no es artificial porque el abono de mi tierra es natural.

I have my lungs that are breathing clear blue,

The altitude that smothers, I am my jaws chewing coca,

The autumn with its fainted leaves, Verses written under starry skies,

A vineyard full of grapes, a sugarcane field under the sun in Cuba,

I am the Caribbean sea watching over the little houses, Doing rituals of holy water,

The wind that combs my hair, I am all the saints that hang from my neck,

The juice of my struggle is not artificial because my land’s fertilizer is natural.

We are walking, we are drawing the way!

[Chorus in Spanish and Portuguese]

Trabajo bruto pero con orgullo, Aquí se comparte lo mío es tuyo,
Este pueblo no se ahoga con maruyos, Y si se derrumba yo lo reconstruyo,
Tampoco pestañeo cuando te miro, Para que te recuerdes de mi apellido,
La operación cóndor invadiendo mi nido, Perdono pero nunca olvido, oye!

Brute work but with pride, Here we share, what’s mine is yours,

These people don’t drown in the waves, And if it collapses I’ll rebuild it,

I don’t blink when I look at you either, So that you’ll remember my last name,

Operation Condor invading my nest, I forgive but I’ll never forget!

Vamos caminado, aquí se respira lucha.
Vamos caminando, yo canto porque se escucha.
Vamos caminando, aquí estamos de pie.
Que viva Latinoamérica.
No puedes comprar mi vida!

We are walking, here we breathe struggle,

We are walking, I sing because you listen,

We are walking, here we are standing up,

Long live Latin America.

You can’t buy my life!

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Translators get a bad rap as traitors. Quite the opposite, to translate is to be an ally.

As social justice interpreters in particular we amplify the voices of those less likely to be heard. (no, not the voiceless thank you)

We interpret not so that some can 'listen in' but so that everyone can more fully participate, because we are stronger as a movement when we bring together our multiple perspectives and different knowledges.

Multilingual movements are stronger movements.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

do no harm

do no harm: acción sin daño

Not quite literal, but this is how folks in Colombia who are working with Mary Anderson's framework are translating the term. Her book is titled "Do no harm: how aid can support peace - or war". A free handbook with the seven steps she suggests to ensure you do no harm is available at

Her *entire* book, translated into Spanish (as Accion sin daño), is available here.

Many thanks to my friend Ricardo Chaparro who teaches at the especilización en Acción Sin Daño de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia and who writes, "La página web de la especialización, para quien le interese, es:

Dicho enlace [book above] hace parte de la Biblioteca Digital en Violencia Sociopolitica, Acción Sin Daño y Construcción de Paz "Bivipas", que es la biblioteca que intentamos construir desde la Universidad Nacional de Colombia, y cuyo link es el siguiente:"

Gracias Ricardo!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


The movement to close the US Army's School of the Americas has come up with this great neologism - see their description of it at the bottom of this plug, reposted from here

Become an Activante* with SOA Watch in Latin America or Washington, DC

Youth leadership in the SOA Watch movement is growing and getting things done. It is the youth of our movement who led the effective Adios Uribe campaign, facilitated the South-North Encuentro that brought together activists from 19 countries, directed the soon-to-be released SOA Watch film, and organized delegations to Honduras. It is the youth who carry the weight in organizing the upcoming massive SOA Watch November Vigil at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia (Nov.18-20, 2011).

Young people have also brought our movement to see the necessity of working from both sides of the border to confront militarization. And, of the importance of crossing over borders to be effective in resisting militarization and promoting a culture of peace.

And, in doing so, their own lives have been forever changed, shaped into global citizens who recognize their own powerful potential as they work together with others.

We would like to invite others to join in this rich experience of becoming an SOA Watch activante* in one of four locations in the Americas. (read on here for further description)

* The term activante was coined by our first international team of young activists, who did not identify with the term "intern." They flipped the Spanish version of the word, pasante – associated to the Spanish pasivo, passive – to its opposite: activante. This term is a good reflection of what the role calls for: energy, leadership, initiative, dynamism, and creativity.