WGBH Openvault

La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez

La Plaza MASTER - CLOSED CAPTIONED Program #2802 Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez Running Time: 26:37 Closed Captioned Patricia Alvarado 617-300-2289 patricia_alvarado@wgbh.org WGBH, 125 Western Avenue, Boston, MA 02134

License Clip

More material is available from this program at the WGBH Archive. If you are a researcher interested in accessing the collection at WGBH, please email archive_requests@wgbh.org.

Undigitized item: Request Digitization

Untranscribed item: Request Transcription

La Plaza
Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered January 10, 1979- Officially La Plaza as a separate series title ended after season 28 (2006). It was replaced by the interview series: Maria Hinojosa: One-on-One which premiered in 2007.

Producer Raquel Ortiz anticipates that the bilingual series will serve as a plaza for the entire local Latino community. Ortiz also served as the host during the first season along with guest hosts. The program format varied from week to week, between musical specials, documentaries, in-studio debates, both locally produced and acquired. Spanish language programs were subtitled in English and English language programs were captioned in Spanish.

See January 1979 Prime Time Program Guide for cover story. Series release date: 1/10/1979

Program Description

Author Julia Alvarez was born in New York City but spent the first four years of her life in the Dominican Republic. Much of her work is still connected in some way to the Caribbean island even though she now lives in Vermont.

Alvarez discusses 1994's In the Time of the Butterflies, her fictionalized account of the four Mirabal sisters, who grew up in the Dominican Republic under the Rafael Trujillo dictatorship. Three of the sisters — Minerva, Patria, and Maria Teresa — were killed by Trujillo's henchmen because they were trying to overthrow the regime. The surviving sister, Dedé, dedicates herself to their memory.

No one in the Dominican Republic was untouched by Trujillo's reign of terror. Alvarez's own family was forced to flee the island after her father's political work put them in danger. Alvarez and host Ilan Stavans discuss the evolution of her work and her status as a successful Latino author.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Ortiz, Raquel (Series Producer)
Chicago: “La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 9, 2018, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_70A12B9197C4449F8FA52285218CFF92.
MLA: “La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 9, 2018. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_70A12B9197C4449F8FA52285218CFF92>.
APA: La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Julia Alvarez. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_70A12B9197C4449F8FA52285218CFF92
If you have more information about this item, we want to know! Please contact us, including the URL.