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Real-world problems are no match for this new crop of Latina superheroes (


Kayden Phoenix's A La Brava superhero team, whose motto is "Dream big, mija." (A La Brava comics)

Author: To read Mandalit del Barco's article, please click here.

In the multiverse of superheroes, some comic book and graphic novel creators are using Latina characters to challenge real-life issues.

New Yorker Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez created La Borinqueña, a Puerto Rican superhero who crusades for issues affecting the Caribbean island – including climate change, economic displacement, renewable energy and Black Lives Matter.

In 2015, while writing stories for Marvel, Miranda learned that Puerto Rico had amassed an $80 billion debt. He decided to write his first graphic novel (which is independently published) to raise awareness and raise money for grassroots non-profit organizations in Puerto Rico.

"La Borinqueña is unapologetically an Afro-Boricua, a Black superhero of Puerto Rican descent who is also an activist," says Miranda.

In her first adventure, "La Borinqueña didn't fight a supervillain; she dealt with a massive hurricane that left the island in a complete blackout. The book was published months before Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in 2017, killing more than 3000 people and destroying homes.

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