Oral histories are intimate conversations between and among people who have generously agreed to share these recordings with BHS’s archives and researchers. Please listen in the spirit with which these were shared. BHS abides by the General Principles & Best Practices for Oral History as agreed upon by the Oral History Association and expects that use of this material will be done with respect for these professional ethics.
Every oral history relies on the memories, views, and opinions of the narrator. Because of the personal nature of oral history, listeners may find some viewpoints or language of the recorded participants to be objectionable. In keeping with its mission of preservation and unfettered access whenever possible, BHS presents these views as recorded.
The audio recording should be considered the primary source for each interview. Where provided, transcripts created prior to 2008 or commissioned by a third party other than BHS, serve as a guide to the interview and are not considered verbatim. More recent transcripts commissioned by BHS are nearly verbatim copies of the recorded interview, and as such may contain the natural false starts, verbal stumbles, misspeaks, and repetitions that are common in conversation. The decision for their inclusion was made because BHS gives primacy to the audible voice and also because some researchers do find useful information in these verbal patterns. Unless these verbal patterns are germane to your scholarly work, when quoting from this material researchers are encouraged to correct the grammar and make other modifications maintaining the flavor of the narrator’s speech while editing the material for the standards of print.
All citations must be attributed to Brooklyn Historical Society:
[Last name, First name], Oral history interview conducted by [Interviewer’s First name Last name], [Month DD, YYYY], [Title of Collection], [Call #]; Brooklyn Historical Society.
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Oral history interview conducted by Marcelo Herman
March 13, 1989
Call number: 1989.004.32
0:10 - Introducciones, razones para mudarse a NY, empleo de los padres, dificultades con el inglés - Introductions, reasons for moving to NY, parents' employment, difficulties with English
5:45 - Primeras experiencias en Brooklyn, anécdotas del servicio militar - First experiences in Brooklyn, anecdotes from military service
18:25 - Usar el teatro para enseñar diferentes tipos de temas sociales y académicos - Using theater to teach children different social and academic subjects
30:40 - Composición étnica de sus estudiantes en East New York - Ethnic composition of narrator's students in East New York
32:52 - Cambios en la composición étnica de Flatbush, experiencias con divisiones raciales en EE.UU. - Changes in ethnic composition of Flatbush neighborhood, experiences with racial divides in US
43:25 - Comida ecuatoriana en Brooklyn, empleo de sus padres - Ecuadorian food in Brooklyn, parents' employment in Brooklyn
48:39 - Razones para no regresar a Ecuador, opiniones acerca de otros inmigrantes ecuatorianos - Reasons for not returning to Ecuador, thoughts on other Ecuadorian migrants
Oral History Interview with Francisco Madrid
Francisco Madrid was born in Guayaquil, Ecuador, and immigrated to New York City with his family in 1970, settling on Ocean Avenue in Brooklyn. He attended high school in the evenings, studying English, and worked in small factories by day. He was drafted, and rather than enter the Army, he joined the Navy, where he spent three years. During that time he was able to perfect his English. After his military service, he enrolled at Brooklyn College, planning to study economics. His interests shifted to theater, and he began to take courses in the theater department. In 1981, he started teaching bilingual classes in a Brooklyn public school, and gained a master's degree in bilingual education. He was then admitted to a doctoral program in educational drama at New York University. In 1989, he was teaching in a heavily Latino/a populated school in the East New York neighborhood of Brooklyn with students from the Caribbean, Central and South America.
In the interview, Francisco Madrid recalls his biographical highlights. He speaks of racial tensions during the early seventies in the Armed Forces, and of relations among Black, White, and Latino sailors. Madrid delves into his professional teaching experience; he has applied his dual interests in education and drama to his classroom work with children, dramatizing abstract ideas such as racial prejudice and social problems, such as the drug epidemic. Madrid describes the racial composition of where he lived; the Ditmas Park and Flatbush neighborhoods of Brooklyn in the late 1980s. He ends the interview with an assessment of Latino theater in New York City. Interview in Spanish conducted by Marcelo Herman.
Brooklyn Historical Society initiated the Hispanic Communities Documentation Project in 1988. Over fifty interviews were conducted to document the experiences of Brooklyn residents who arrived from Puerto Rico, Panama, Ecuador, and several other Central and South American nations in the latter half of the twentieth century. This collection includes recordings and transcripts of interviews conducted between 1988 and 1989. The oral histories often contain descriptions of immigration, living arrangements, neighborhood demographics, discrimination, employment, community development, and political leadership. Also included are photographs and printed ephemera.
CitationMadrid, Francisco, Oral history interview conducted by Marcelo Herman, March 13, 1989, Hispanic Communities Documentation Project records and oral histories, 1989.004.32; Brooklyn Historical Society.
- Madrid, Francisco
- Tamayo, Nelson
- African Americans
- Ecuadorian Americans
- Emigration and immigration
- English as a second language| Hispanic Americans
- Racial discrimination
- Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.)
- Ditmas Park (New York, N.Y.)
- East New York (New York, N.Y.)
- Flatbush (New York, N.Y.)
- Ocean Avenue (Brooklyn, New York, N.Y.)
- Puerto Rico
Finding AidHispanic Communities Documentation Project records and oral histories