Mama Tingo

Activist Type
Civil Rights

Mamá Tingó was an Afro-Dominican peasant movement leader and political icon who, despite being illiterate, became a prominent activist for rural farming communities. She and her husband worked on their farm for many years until a landholder took their land. Mamá Tingó, a member of the Federation of Christian Agrarian Leagues, led the fight to secure benefits for farm workers in Hato Viejo, ultimately winning land rights for over 300 families. Tragically, she was assassinated on November 3, 1974, while opposing the unjust seizure of residents' lands during Joaquín Balaguer's second presidency in the Dominican Republic. Mamá Tingó's legacy is commemorated with a station on the Santo Domingo Metro system and a statue in Monte Plata, though her story is often overlooked in history.

Artwork by
Carla Zorrilla

Mama Tingó had an unyielding spirit and commitment to the well-being of her community. She gave her life to fight for her fellow farmers’ lands and was able to win the rights of more than 300 families to own their own lands. For this portrait, I wanted to depict her in the same environment that she lived in and fought for, the farms. I was inspired by the bright colors and simple shapes of the iconic “casitas de campo” and Dominican paintings.

Dominican Republic

Santo Domingo
February 27, 1844
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