Category: Unsettled in the Mission

Unsettled/ Inquietos: A collaboration with El Tecolote, the bilingual newspaper of the Mission!

Adriana Camarena is proud to collaborate with Accion Latina to create and distribute “Unsettled/Inquietos,” a series of literary non-fiction essays based on portraits of working class and poor residents of the traditionally Latino Mission District of San Francisco. The essays will be published in English and Spanish in the bilingual El Tecolote newspaper of Acción Read More

Adriana Camarena responds to YBCA’s “Take This Hammer Exhibit” as part of Ten Bay Area Writers Respond, June 7th, 2016

An essay by Adriana Camarena about affordable housing, police brutality, homelessness, art and activism. The author was commissioned by the YBCA to write a response to the exhibit “Take This Hammer”, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), March 11th to August 16th, 2016 (Guest Curator: Christian L. Frock) and present work at the event: Read More

108 Homes

Work-in-progress/ Extract (updated Sept. 8, 2014) 108 Homes For Mary Brown— My friend —M— gave me a list of 108 homes with listed owners who had not changed in the last 35 years. I went knocking on those address doors wanting to know who lived there. I started with names on my list that did Read More

My Mission Blood: Tales From The Block!

My Mission Blood: Tales from the Block! is a collaboration with residents born and bred in the Mission District of San Francisco. Contributors sent an old photo of themselves on Mission streets, with a caption. The photos provide insight into the visual and narrative streetscapes that these residents built block-by-block. With pain, we see their Read More

Untweetable Poems (141 character poems)

Untweetable Poems is a poetry series inspired by the oral histories told to Camarena by Mission District residents. These poems cut across all the themes of the Unsettlers project, and provide community stories in a nugget. In 2011, San Francisco approved a six-year tax break for the tech titan Twitter, and in 2012 the company Read More

Matres Dolorosas: A Watershed of Tears

A Watershed of Tears: Arroyo de los Dolores (extract 1/5) Ocean fog protected the Bay from European discovery, until 1769, when explorer Gaspar de Portolá viewed the body of water from a mountaintop. Six years later, on August 5, 1775, the ship San Carlos sailed through the golden gate under a moonlit sky. The Huimen Read More

Campfire: Eviction Community Stories

On January, 17, 2014, the “village” gathered around a campfire to hark the horrors of no-fault evictions of lifelong Mission residents and other San Franciscans provoked by rampant real estate speculation in the City.  Fourteen brave storytellers shared their horrific experiences. Below is the resulting documentary film series Campfire: Eviction Community Stories, consisting of a Read More

The Corrido of El Cabe

“The corrido (Spanish pronunciation: [koˈriðo]) is a popular narrative song and poetry form, a ballad. […]It derives largely from the romance, and in its most known form consists of 1) a salutation from the singer and prologue to the story; 2) the story itself; 3) a moral and farewell from the singer. […] Various themes Read More

Homicides in the Mission (2008-2013)

Homicides In The Mission (2008), Stats Part I Youth homicide is the leading cause of death among youth ages 15-24 in San Francisco. The year that Adriana Camarena arrived to the Mission (2008), 19 people were killed in the Mission, primarily with use of firearms: Name Age Date of Incident Aproximate Location Justin Lee 40 Read More

La Llorona: The Twelve Evictions (Essay)

The First Eviction: Memory Once upon a time, long before the Mission was El Barrio and a hipster incubator, it was simply a watershed.  From the twin mounds to the west, a myriad of rivulets and creeks tumbled into the crevices below.  The most robust creek coursed east towards the middle of the valley, engorging Read More

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