Filmmaker brings message of cultural understanding

Roberto Campos

We all come from different backgrounds, have different cultural identities and come from different families.

This is the idea Daniel Mosquera wished to communicate in his film “San Pancho es pa’l que lo goce”, in English “Sanpachando: St. Pacho is for the Revelers”, which he presented in Carter Hall on Thursday.


The film explores the ethnically African community in El Chocó region of Colombia during their festival honoring Saint Francis of Assisi.

Mosquera, an associate professor at Union College in New York, co-directed and produced the film.

“[The film] is supposed to be presented from the perspective of the locals to get a deeper understanding of the festival,” Mosquera said.

Afro-Latin American Studies, a class taught by Manuel Apodaca-Valdez, assistant professor of Spanish at USI, was the inspiration for the event.

Mosquera was invited to USI to “increase awareness about tolerance and understanding of others and diversity,” said Apodaca-Valdez.

The attendees of the event were given the opportunity to discuss and ask questions about cultural diversity and the film.

“I’m happy USI gives opportunities to students to see someone outside the community speak,” Bryan Lewallen, a Spanish major at USI, said.

Festivals like San Pancho were created, in the Afro-Columbians’ words, “so people don’t forget the problems they have,” and to celebrate their culture and their ethnic pride.

Mosquera used this event and his film to talk about understanding different cultures and the difference between tolerance and understanding.

“You have to go beyond tolerance to understand each other,” Mosquera said,

“because if you just tolerate someone, it doesn’t mean you understand and accept them.”