On writing non-stereotypical Latinxs

A short guide on Latinx stereotypes and how to create respectful and multifaceted Latinx characters for non-Latinx writers and creators.

Image: Jane Villanueva from Jane The VIrgin, writing on her computer.

Stereotype: Latinxs are all from Mexico.

Image: a collage of flags from different Latin American countries.

Stereotype: Latinxs are all of an indefinite, brown-ish ancestry; with light brown skin, full lips and dark wavy hair.

Image: Elena of Avalor, Disney’s pseudo-Latina princess.

Stereotype: All Latinxs speak Spanish.

Image: photo of a mural in Brazil protesting the Football World Cup, written in Portuguese.

Stereotype: All Latinxs are devout catholics.

Image: a mural of the Virgin of Guadalupe, a Mexican icon.

Stereotype: All Latinxs are highly superstitious.

Image: an altar to Gauchito Gil built on the side of an Argentinian road.

Negative stereotypes that are usually associated with Latinxs.

Image: white people at a college party dressed up as Cholas.
Image: still from a movie, of various Latinas and Black women dressed as hotel maids.
Image: still from “Big Hero 6” showing Honey Lemon, a character who was described by the writers as Latina but otherwise came off as your average white gringa.
Image: on the left, Gus wielding an axe. On the right, Nora working in a laboratory.
Image: Mariana and Jesus from the Fosters, who are transracial adoptees.
Image: a set of square photos showing pictures of Latinxs of different nationalities and races, including Gina Torres, Laura Souza, Frida Kahlo, Nona Gaye, Florencia de la V, Bruno Mars, Don Omar, Juan Gil Navarro, Ignacio Huang and Aristoteles Picho.

Translator, (aspiring) writer. Often described as “opinionated”, even more often as “annoying”.