Irene Vázquez

Irene Vázquez is the digital intern at the Texas Observer.

The Next Trans Griot

by | Mon, May 31, 2021 at 9:00 am CST

‘On Juneteenth’ Refuses Easy Answers About the Importance of People of Color to Texas History

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Annette Gordon-Reed offers a historical primer on the conditions that made Juneteenth a holiday and its importance to the nation.

This past summer, celebrating Juneteenth at home in Texas made me feel as though I was at the center of the world. I was used to spending the holiday, which celebrates the announcement of the end of legal slavery in … Read More


“Wings of Ebony” Brings Black Girl Magic to Life

Houstonian J. Elle’s young adult novel lets Black girls soar through worlds both fantastical and familiar.

When I Get Home, Houston-born Solange’s 2019 album, is an ode to “a kind of Houston of the mind”—grounded yet ephemeral, breezy yet intentional, capacious and Black-owned. “I saw things I imagined,” she sings. For Solange, as it is for … Read More

Community members speak at a coalition meeting in January 2020.
News, Topics

In Houston’s Third Ward, Community Groups are Fighting for Equitable Development

The Third Ward has a long history of displacement. Community members want a seat at the table.

At churches across Houston’s Third Ward, Vacation Bible School is a ritual of summer. Between lessons, music often peals out of the windows as children gather for games and food. The adults who supervise them laugh and gossip. For Dolores … Read More