WGBH Openvault

La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Esmeralda Santiago


Not Closed Captioned

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: Esmeralda Santiago
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

Esmeralda Santiago is the eldest of eleven children. She spent her childhood in Puerto Rico, moving back and forth between a tiny village and Santurce, a suburb of San Juan. With her mother and siblings she moved to New York in 1961, at the age of thirteen. She attended junior high school in Brooklyn, and Performing Arts High School in Manhattan. After the extraordinary years described in her two memoirs, When I Was Puerto Rican and Almost a Woman, she graduated from Harvard University and received a master's degree from Sarah Lawrence College. Santiago is also the author of América's Dream and is coeditor, with Joie Davidow, of Las Christmas: Favorite Latino Authors Share Their Holiday. In September 2002 Almost a Woman was dramatized for PBS ExxonMobil Masterpiece Theatre’s American Collection.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Ortiz, Raquel (Series Producer)
Chicago: “La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Esmeralda Santiago,” 01/14/2003, WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 19, 2018, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_F5AC0DC4133541AC819C67B011AB97E4.
MLA: “La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Esmeralda Santiago.” 01/14/2003. WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 19, 2018. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_F5AC0DC4133541AC819C67B011AB97E4>.
APA: La Plaza; Conversations with Ilan Stavans: Esmeralda Santiago. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_F5AC0DC4133541AC819C67B011AB97E4
If you have more information about this item, we want to know! Please contact us, including the URL.