Inspired by the Puerto Rican national anthem of the same name, the superhero La Borinqueña — a woman named Marisol Rios De La Luz, wearing a costume inspired by the Puerto Rican flag — will make her debut this summer at the Puerto Rican Day Parade. She also will be featured in a comic book to be printed in the fall during an event organized by the creator Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez called Café Con Comics (“Coffee With Comics”); it will be held at the CUNY East Harlem campus building in a historically Puerto Rican neighborhood.
La Borinqueña has the powers of nature — such as hurricanes, the sea and the sun — and protects Puerto Rico from natural disasters. Her greatest power, Miranda-Rodriguez says, will be showing Puerto Ricans — those on the island and in the United States — that the power to make Puerto Rico better lies within them as much as it does inside of her.
“It’s not about [her powers], but it’s about what the character represents,” Miranda-Rodriguez says. “She’s here to remind you that the power of our people comes from our people. We don’t have to ask for something when it is already within us. It’s a narrative that’s going to remind us of ourselves. We’ve always had that power. Being Puerto Rican is our superpower.”
It was the Marvel comic featuring Grandma Estela — the one that touched so many readers — that led to Miranda-Rodriguez’s creation of other Puerto Rican comic-book heroes. He says there is power in those panels when you’re able to see yourself through art.
“People saw themselves. And when you see yourself, that’s empowering,” Miranda-Rodriguez said. “When you hear your story, you recognize for the first time that you have that superpower.”
Source: The Washington Post