Heavy makeup, gaudy jewelry, dramatic hairstyles, and clothes that are considered cheap, fake, too short, too tight, or too masculine: working-class Black and Latina girls and women are often framed as embodying "excessive" styles that are presumed to indicate sexual deviance. In Aesthetics of Excess Jillian Hernandez examines how middle-class discourses of aesthetic value racialize the bodies of women and girls of color. At the same time, their style can be a source of cultural capital when appropriated by the contemporary art scene. Drawing on her community arts work with Black and Latina girls in Miami, Hernandez analyzes the art and self-image of these girls alongside works produced by contemporary artists and pop musicians such as Wangechi Mutu, Kara Walker, and Nicki Minaj. Through these relational readings, Hernandez shows how notions of high and low culture are complicated when women and girls of color engage in cultural production and how they challenge the policing of their bodies and sexualities through artistic authorship.
Maggie Rivas-Rodríguez 's edited volume Mexican Americans & World War II brought pivotal stories from the shadows, contributing to the growing acknowledgment of Mexican American patriotism as a meaningful force within the Greatest Generation. In this latest anthology, Rivas-Rodríguez and historian Emilio Zamora team up with scholars from various disciplines to add new insights. Beyond the Latino World War II Hero focuses on home-front issues and government relations, delving into new arenas of research and incorporating stirring oral histories.
These recollections highlight realities such as post-traumatic stress disorder and its effects on veterans' families, as well as Mexican American women of this era, whose fighting spirit inspired their daughters to participate in Chicana/o activism of the 1960s and 1970s. Other topics include the importance of radio as a powerful medium during the war and postwar periods, the participation of Mexican nationals in World War II, and intergovernmental negotiations involving Mexico and Puerto Rico. Addressing the complexity of the Latino war experience, such as the tandem between the frontline and the disruption of the agricultural migrant stream on the home front, the authors and contributors unite diverse perspectives to harness the rich resources of an invaluable oral history.
Today the United States leads the world in incarceration rates. The country increasingly relies on the prison system as a “fix” for the regulation of societal issues. Captivity Beyond Prisons is the first full-length book to explicitly link prisons and incarceration to the criminalization of Latina (im)migrants.
Starting in the 1990s, the United States saw tremendous expansion in the number of imprisoned (im)migrants, specifically Latinas/os. Consequently, there was also an increase in the number of deportations. In addition to regulating society, prisons also serve as a reproductive control strategy, both in preventing female inmates from having children and by separating them from their families. With an eye to racialized and gendered technologies of power, Escobar argues that incarcerated Latinas are especially depicted as socially irrecuperable because they are not considered useful within the neoliberal labor market. This perception impacts how they are criminalized, which is not limited to incarceration but also extends to and affects Latina (im)migrants’ everyday lives. Escobar also explores the relationship between the immigrant rights movement and the prison abolition movement, scrutinizing a variety of social institutions working on solutions to social problems that lead to imprisonment.
Accessible to both academics and those in the justice and social service sectors, Escobar’s book pushes readers to consider how, even in radical spaces, unequal power relations can be reproduced by the very entities that attempt to undo them.
Although there have been substantial contributions to Chicana literature and criticism over the past few decades, Chicanas are still underrepresented and underappreciated in the mainstream literary world and virtually nonexistent in the canon. Writers like Sandra Cisneros, Ana Castillo, and Gloria Anzaldúa have managed to find larger audiences and critical respect, but there are legions of Chicana writers and artists who have been marginalized and ignored despite their talent. Even in Chicano anthologies, the focus has tended to be more on male writers. Chicanas have often found themselves without a real home in the academic world. Tey Diana Rebolledo has been writing about Chicana/Latina identity, literature, discrimination, and feminism for more than two decades. In this collection of essays, she brings together both old and new works to give a state-of-the-moment look at the still largely unanswered questions raised by vigilant women of color throughout the last half of the twentieth century. An intimate introductory essay about Rebolledo's personal experiences as the daughter of a Mexican mother and a Peruvian father serves to lay the groundwork for the rest of the volume. The essays delve into the historical development of Chicana writing and its early narratives, the representation of Chicanas as seen on book covers, Chicana feminism, being a Chicana critic in the academy, Chicana art history, and Chicana creativity. Rebolledo encourages “guerrillera” warfare against academia in order to open up the literary canon to Chicana/Latina writers who deserve validation.
The Devil's Workshop: Poems
Demetria Martínez University of Arizona Press, 2002 Library of Congress PS3563.A7333337D4 2002 | Dewey Decimal 811.54
"I can no more describe love," writes Demetria Martínez, "than mystics can light."
Don't believe it for a minute. In this collection of fifty-three poems, the author of the award-winning novel Mother Tongue explores the themes that have long characterized her writing: the creative and destructive powers of romantic love, the failure of political systems, the spiritual life, and the need to forgive oneself in order to move on with the work of transformation, both social and personal. Through poems that confront mortality even as they demand social justice, Martínez writes of surviving in a culture where traditional values often get lost in the complexities of everyday life. Of nurturing relationships with nieces, nephews, and parents while pondering questions of life and death, love and loss. Of caring for one's own body when "each cough is an underground nuclear explosion, / Unraveling your body’s hard-won peace accord." Martínez cauterizes old wounds inflicted by various agents: death, political repression, betrayal, and of course failed romance: "Don’t bother, I did it / First. Broke my own / Damn heart." Here are "kernels of loneliness too stubborn to grind / Down to blue meal," and the struggle for a renewed sense of self as middle age approaches:
At this age you touch what little sanctity you can muster.
The yearning burns to do more, to do more by hand.
To thread your very life through a needle's eye.
Martínez serves up a heady blend of political and sensual imagery. Her keen observations and compassionate voice lead the reader on a journey of self-exploration, of coping with life's mundanities as well as its heartaches: "I could use a loving word, / A loaf of bread, a rose, / Help with the laundry." Through her unquenchable passion for life, Demetria Martínez leaves the devil’s workshop and brings us closer to an understanding of what is real.
In Domestic Economies, Susanna Rosenbaum examines how two groups of women—Mexican and Central American domestic workers and the predominantly white, middle-class women who employ them—seek to achieve the "American Dream." By juxtaposing their understandings and experiences, she illustrates how immigrant and native-born women strive to reach that ideal, how each group is indispensable to the other's quest, and what a vital role reproductive labor plays in this pursuit. Through in-depth ethnographic research with these women at work, at home, and in the urban spaces of Los Angeles, Rosenbaum positions domestic service as an intimate relationship that reveals two versions of female personhood. Throughout, Rosenbaum underscores the extent to which the ideology of the American Dream is racialized and gendered, exposing how the struggle for personal worth and social recognition is shaped at the intersection of motherhood and paid employment.
Fleshing the Spirit brings together established and new writers exploring the relationships between the physical body, the spirit and spirituality, and social justice activism. Examining the complex and dynamic connections among these concepts, the writers emphasize the value of “flesh and blood experience” as a site of knowledge. They argue that spirituality—something quite different from institutional religious practice—can heal the mind/body split and set the stage for social change. Spirituality, they argue, is a necessary component of an alternative political agenda focused on equitable social and ecological change.
The anthology incorporates different genres of writing—such as poetry, testimonials, critical essays, and historical analysis—and stimulates the reader to engage spirituality in a critical, personal, and creative way. This interdisciplinary work is the first that attempts to theorize the radical interconnection between women of color, spirituality, and social activism. Before transformative political work can be done, the authors say in multiple ways, we must recognize that our spiritual need is a desire to more fully understand our relations with others. Conflict experienced on many levels sometimes severs those relations, separating us from others along racial, class, gender, sexual, national, or other socially constructed lines.
Fleshing the Spirit offers a spiritual journey of healing, health, and human revolution. The book’s open invitation to engage in critical dialogue and social activism—with the spirit and spirituality at the forefront—illuminates the way to social change and the ability to live in harmony with life’s universal energies.
Norma E. Cantú
C. Alejandra Elenes
Alicia Enciso Litschi
Oliva M. Espín
Inés Hernández- Avila
Rosa María Hernández Juárez
Sarahi Nuñez- Mejia
Laura E. Pérez
From the exuberant excesses of Carmen Miranda in the "tutti frutti hat" to the curvaceous posterior of Jennifer Lopez, the Latina body has long been a signifier of Latina/o identity in U.S. popular culture. But how does this stereotype of the exotic, erotic Latina "bombshell" relate, if at all, to real Latina women who represent a wide spectrum of ethnicities, national origins, cultures, and physical appearances? How are ideas about "Latinidad" imagined, challenged, and inscribed on Latina bodies? What racial, class, and other markers of identity do representations of the Latina body signal or reject?
In this broadly interdisciplinary book, experts from the fields of Latina/o studies, media studies, communication, comparative literature, women's studies, and sociology come together to offer the first wide-ranging look at the construction and representation of Latina identity in U.S. popular culture. The authors consider such popular figures as actresses Lupe Vélez, Salma Hayek, and Jennifer Lopez; singers Shakira and Celia Cruz; and even the Hispanic Barbie doll in her many guises. They investigate the media discourses surrounding controversial Latinas such as Lorena Bobbitt and Marisleysis González. And they discuss Latina representations in Lupe Solano's series of mystery books and in the popular TV shows El Show de Cristina and Laura en América. This extensive treatment of Latina representation in popular culture not only sheds new light on how meaning is produced through images of the Latina body, but also on how these representations of Latinas are received, revised, and challenged.
Homegirls in the Public Sphere
By Marie "Keta" Miranda University of Texas Press, 2003 Library of Congress HV6439.U7O195 2003 | Dewey Decimal 364.106608968079
Girls in gangs are usually treated as objects of public criticism and rejection. Seldom are they viewed as objects worthy of understanding and even more rarely are they allowed to be active subjects who craft their own public persona—which is what makes this work unique. In this book, Marie "Keta" Miranda presents the results of an ethnographic collaboration with Chicana gang members, in which they contest popular and academic representations of Chicana/o youth and also construct their own narratives of self identity through a documentary film, It's a Homie Thang!
In telling the story of her research in the Fruitvale community of Oakland, California, Miranda honestly reveals how even a sympathetic ethnographer from the same ethnic group can objectify the subjects of her study. She recounts how her project evolved into a study of representation and its effects in the public sphere as the young women spoke out about how public images of their lives rarely come close to the reality. As Miranda describes how she listened to the gang members and collaborated in the production of their documentary, she sheds new light on the politics of representation and ethnography, on how inner city adolescent Chicanas present themselves to various publics, and on how Chicana gangs actually function.
Let go your keys, let go your gun, let go your good pen and your rings, let your wolf mask go and kiss goodbye your goddess figurine.
With this invocation, María Meléndez beckons us on a journey—an exotic expedition through life’s mysteries in search of the finer strands of experience. In a Latina voice laced with a naturalist’s sense of wonder, she weaves bold images reflecting a world threaded by unseen wounds, now laid before us with an unflinching love of life and an exquisite precision of language. Adopting multiple guises—field researcher, laboring mother, grief-stricken lover—Meléndez casts aside stereotypes and expectations to forge a new language steeped in life and landscape. Whether meditating on a controlled prairie burn or contemplating the turquoise cheek of a fathead minnow, she weaves words and memories into a rich tapestry that resonates with sensual detail and magnifies her sense of maternal wildness, urging us to “Love as much as you / can, don’t throw your heart / away to just one god.” In her paean to the Aztec deity Tonacacihuatl, mother of the gods, Meléndez muses that “How many spirits she’s twin to, and how long she’ll last in this world, / are secrets stashed in the rattle / of corn ears, in the coils / of venomous snakes.”
Through stunning images and stark realism, her poems embrace motherhood and vocation, love and grief, land and life, to bring new meaning to the natural world and how we experience it.
Juana Briones de Miranda lived an unusual life, which is wonderfully recounted in this highly accessible biography. She was one of the first residents of what is now San Francisco, then named Yerba Buena (Good Herb), reportedly after a medicinal tea she concocted. She was among the few women in California of her time to own property in her own name, and she proved to be a skilled farmer, rancher, and businesswoman. In retelling her life story, Jeanne Farr McDonnell also retells the history of nineteenth-century California from the unique perspective of this surprising woman.
Juana Briones was born in 1802 and spent her early youth in Santa Cruz, a community of retired soldiers who had helped found Spanish California, Native Americans, and settlers from Mexico. In 1820, she married a cavalryman at the San Francisco Presidio, Apolinario Miranda. She raised her seven surviving sons and daughters and adopted an orphaned Native American girl. Drawing on knowledge she gained about herbal medicine and other cures from her family and Native Americans, she became a highly respected curandera, or healer.
Juana set up a second home and dairy at the base of then Loma Alta, now Telegraph Hill, the first house in that area. After gaining a church-sanctioned separation from her abusive husband, she expanded her farming and cattle business in 1844 by purchasing a 4,400-acre ranch, where she built her house, located in the present city of Palo Alto. She successfully managed her extensive business interests until her death in 1889. Juana Briones witnessed extraordinary changes during her lifetime. In this fascinating book, readers will see California’s history in a new and revelatory light.
Over the past twenty-five years, nongovernment organizations (NGOs) run by women and devoted to advancing women’s well-being have proliferated in Mexico and along both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. In this sociological analysis of grassroots activism, Milagros Peña compares women’s NGOs in two regions—the state of Michoacán in central Mexico and the border region encompassing El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. In both Michoacán and the border region, women have organized to confront a variety of concerns, including domestic violence, the growing number of single women who are heads of households, and exploitive labor conditions. By comparing women’s activism in two distinct areas, Peña illuminates their different motivations, alliances, and organizational strategies in relation to local conditions and national and international activist networks.
Drawing on interviews with the leaders of more than two dozen women’s NGOs in Michoacán and El Paso/Ciudad Juárez, Peña examines the influence of the Roman Catholic Church and liberation theology on Latina activism, and she describes how activist affiliations increasingly cross ethnic, racial, and class lines. Women’s NGOs in Michoacán put an enormous amount of energy into preparations for the 1995 United Nations–sponsored World Conference on Women in Beijing, and they developed extensive activist networks as a result. As Peña demonstrates, activists in El Paso/Ciudad Juárez were less interested in the Beijing conference; they were intensely focused on issues related to immigration and to the murders and disappearances of scores of women in Ciudad Juárez. Ultimately, Peña’s study highlights the consciousness-raising work done by NGOs run by and for Mexican and Mexican American women: they encourage Latinas to connect their personal lives to the broader political, economic, social, and cultural issues affecting them.
From ads for Victoria's Secret to the character roles of Rosie Perez, the mass media have been defining race and femininity. In this diverse set of essays, Angharad N. Valdivia breaks theoretical and methodological boundaries by exploring the relationship of the media to various audiences. Throughout A Latina in the Land of Hollywood we are challenged to think differently about the media messages we often unconsciously consume, such as the popular representations of certain Latina cultural icons. Valdivia shows how reporters focus on Guatemalan activist Rigoberta Menchú's big smile, Brazilian media magnate Xuxa's blonde hair, and Puerto Rican actress Rosie Perez's high-pitched voice, never quite creating a comprehensive portrayal of these women. In her discussion of lingerie catalogs, Valdivia uncovers a similarly skewed depiction. The lush, high-class bedrooms of Victoria's Secret differ as much from the earthy, spare world of Frederick's of Hollywood as the types, sizes, and uses of the lingerie that the two companies sell. Valdivia takes a look at family films, arguing that single mothers are almost always portrayed as either trampy floozies or sexless, hapless women, whereas single dads fare much better. Whether examining one teenager's likes and dislikes or considering single parenthood in family films, Valdivia investigates how popular culture has become the arena in which we struggle to know ourselves and to make ourselves known. She calls for scholars to move beyond investigating implicit themes in films and media to studying the ways that audiences of different colors, ages, genders, and sexual preferences might understand or misunderstand such cultural messages. A Latina in the Land of Hollywood aims to explode traditional discussions of media and popular culture. It is a must-read for anyone interested in popular culture, television, and film.
Latina Lives in Milwaukee
Theresa Delgadillo University of Illinois Press, 2015 Library of Congress F589.M69M5 2015 | Dewey Decimal 305.48868730922
Milwaukee's small but vibrant Mexican and Mexican American community of the 1920s grew over succeeding decades to incorporate Mexican, Mexican American, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central American, and Caribbean migration to the city. Drawing on years of interviews and collaboration with interviewees, Theresa Delgadillo offers a set of narratives that explore the fascinating family, community, work, and career experiences of Milwaukee's Latinas during this time of transformation. Through the stories of these women, Delgadillo caringly provides access to a wide variety of Latina experiences: early Mexican settlers entering careers as secretaries and entrepreneurs; Salvadoran and Puerto Rican women who sought educational opportunity in the U.S., sometimes in flight from political conflicts; Mexican women becoming leather workers and drill press operators; and second-generation Latinas entering the professional classes. These women show how members of diverse generations, ethnicities, and occupations embraced interethnic collaboration and coalition but also negotiated ethnic and racial discrimination, domestic violence, workplace hostilities, and family separations. A one-of-a-kind collection, Latina Lives in Milwaukee sheds light on the journeys undertaken then and now by Latinas in the region, and lays the foundation for the further study of the Latina experience in the Midwest. With contributions from Ramona Arsiniega, María Monreal Cameron, Daisy Cubías, Elvira Sandoval Denk, Rosemary Sandoval Le Moine, Antonia Morales, Carmen Murguia, Gloria Sandoval Rozman, Margarita Sandoval Skare, Olga Valcourt Schwartz, and Olivia Villarreal.
Through an in-depth study of the Latino community in Boston, Carol hardy-Fanta addressees three key debates in American politics: how to look at the ways in which women and men envision the meaning of politics and political participation; how to understand culture and the political life of expanding immigrant populations; and how to create a more participatory America. The author's interviews with Latinos from Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, and Central and South America and her participation in community events in North Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, and the South End document the often ignored contribution of Latina women as candidates, political mobilizers, and community organizers. Hardy-Fanta examines critical gender differences in how politics is defined, what strategies Latina women and Latino men use to generate political participation, and how culture and gender interact in the political empowerment of the ethic communities.
Hardy-Fanta challenges the notion of political apathy among Latinos and presents factors that stimulate political participation. She finds that the vision of politics promoted by Latina women—one based on connectedness, collectivity, community, and consiousness-raising—contrasts sharply with a male political concern for status, hierarchy, and personal opportunity.
Latina/os are currently the largest minority population in the United States. They are also one of the fastest growing. Yet, we have very limited research and understanding of their sexualities. Instead, stereotypical images flourish even though scholars have challenged the validity and narrowness of these images and the lack of attention to the larger social context. Gathering the latest empirical work in the social and behavioral sciences, this reader offers us a critical lens through which to understand these images and the social context framing Latina/os and their sexualities.
Situated at the juncture of Latina/o studies and sexualities studies, Latina/o Sexualities provides a single resource that addresses the current state of knowledge from a multidisciplinary perspective. Contributors synthesize and critique the literature and carve a separate space where issues of Latina/o sexualities can be explored given the limitations of prevalent research models. This work compels the current wave in sexuality studies to be more inclusive of ethnic minorities and sets an agenda that policy makers and researchers will find invaluable.
One of Choice magazine's Outstanding Academic Books of 1999 Accepted wisdom about the opportunities available to African American and Latina women in the U.S. labor market has changed dramatically. Although the 1970s saw these women earning almost as much as their white counterparts, in the 1980s their relative wages began falling behind, and the job prospects plummeted for those with little education and low skills. At the same time, African American women more often found themselves the sole support of their families. While much social science research has centered on the problems facing black male workers, Latinas and African American Women at Work offers a comprehensive investigation into the eroding progress of these women in the U.S. labor market. The prominent sociologists and economists featured in this volume describe how race and gender intersect to especially disadvantage black and Latina women. Their inquiries encompass three decades of change for women at all levels of the workforce, from those who spend time on the welfare rolls to middle class professionals. Among the many possible sources of increased disadvantage, they particularly examine the changing demands for skills, increasing numbers of immigrants in the job market, the precariousness of balancing work and childcare responsibilities, and employer discrimination. While racial inequity in hiring often results from educational differences between white and minority women, this cannot explain the discrimination faced by women with higher skills. Minority women therefore face a two-tiered hurdle based on race and gender. Although the picture for young African American women has grown bleaker overall, for Latina women, the story is more complex, with a range of economic outcomes among Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans, and Central and South Americans. Latinas and African American Women at Work reveals differences in how professional African American and white women view their position in the workforce, with black women perceiving more discrimination, for both race and gender, than whites. The volume concludes with essays that synthesize the evidence about racial and gender-based obstacles in the labor market. Given the current heated controversy over female and minority employment, as well as the recent sweeping changes to the national welfare system, the need for empirical data to inform the public debate about disadvantaged women is greater than ever before. The important findings in Latinas and African American Women at Work substantially advance our understanding of social inequality and the pervasive role of race, ethnicity and gender in the economic well-being of American women.
Latinas on the Line provides a compelling analysis and historical and theoretical grounding of the oral histories, never before seen, of Latina information workers in the Bell System from their entrance in 1973 to their retirements by 2015. Author Melissa Villa-Nicholas demonstrates the importance of Latinas of the field of telecommunications through their own words and uses supporting archival research to provide an overview of how Latinas engage and remember a critical analysis of their work place, information technologies, and the larger globalized economy and shifting borderlands through their intersectional identities as information workers. The book offers a rich and engaging portrait of the critical history of Latinas in telecommunications, from their manual to automated to digitized labor.
During the last two decades of the twentieth century, U.S. Latina writers have made a profound impact on American letters with fiction in both mainstream and regional venues. Following on the heels of this vibrant and growing body of work, New Latina Narrative offers the first in-depth synthesis and literary analysis of this transethnic genre. Focusing on the dynamic writing published in the 1980s and 1990s by Mexican American, Puerto Rican, Cuban American, and Domincan American women, New Latina Narrative illustrates how these writers have redefined the concepts of multiculturalism and diversity in American society. As participants in both mainstream and grassroots forms of multiculturalism, these new Latina narrativists have created a feminine space within postmodern ethnicity, disrupting the idealistic veneer of diversity with which publishers often market this fiction. In this groundbreaking study, author Ellen McCracken opens the conventional boundaries of Latino/a literary criticism, incorporating elements of cultural studies theory and contemporary feminism. Emphasizing the diversity within new Latina narrative, McCracken discusses the works of more than two dozen writers, including Julia Alvarez, Denise Chávez, Sandra Cisneros, Cristina Garcia, Graciela Limón, Demetria Martínez, Pat Mora, Cherríe Moraga, Mary Helen Ponce, and Helena María Viramontes. She stresses such themes as the resignification of master narrative, the autobiographical self and collective identity, popular religiosity, subculture and transgression, and narrative harmony and dissonance. New Latina Narrative provides readers an enriched basis for reconceiving the overall Latino/a literary field and its relation to other contemporary literary and cultural trends. McCracken's original approach extends the Latina literary canon—both the works to be studied and the issues to be examined—resulting in a valuable work for all readers of women's studies, contemporary American literature, ethnic studies, communications, and sociology.
Among students and aficionados of contemporary literature, the work of Latina and Latino poets holds a particular fascination. Through works imbued with fire and passion, these writers have kindled new enthusiasm in their compatriots and admiration in non-Latino readers. This book brings together recent interviews with fifteen Latino/a poets, a cross-section of Chicano, Puerto Rican, and Cuban voices who discuss not only their work but also related issues that help define their place in American literature. Each talks at length about the craft of his or her poetry—both the influences and the process behind it—and takes a stand on social and political issues affecting Latinos across the United States.
The interviews feature both established writers published as early as the 1960s and emerging artists, each of whom has enjoyed success in other literary forms also. As Bruce Dick's insightful questions reveal, the key threads linking these writers are their connections to their families and communities and their concern for civil rights—believing like Chicana writer Pat Mora that "the work of the poet is for the people." The interviews also reveal diversity among and within the three communities, from Victor Hernández Cruz, who traces Latino collective identity to Africa and claims that all Latinos are "swimming in olive oil," to Cuban writer Gustavo Perez Firmat, who considers nationality more important than ethnicity and says that "the term Latino erases [his] nationality."
The dialogues also offer new insights on the place of Chicano/a writings in the U.S.-Mexico borderlands, on the Puerto Rican/Nuyorican establishment, and on the anti-Castro stand of Cuban-born poets. As these writers answer questions about their work, background, ethnic identity, and political ideology, they provide a wealth of biographical, intellectual, and literary material collected here for the first time. A Poet's Truth is a provocative and revealing book that not only conveys the fire of these writers' passions but also sheds important light on a whole literary movement.
Sandra María Esteves
Victor Hernández Cruz
Carolina Hospital and Carlos Medina
Judith Ortiz Cofer
Gustavo Pérez Firmat
Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Puro Teatro, A Latina Anthology
Edited by Alberto Sandoval-Sánchez and Nancy Sandoval Sternbach University of Arizona Press, 2000 Library of Congress PS628.H57P87 2000 | Dewey Decimal 812.54080928709
From plays produced on shoestring budgets in the 1970s to today's high-tech performance pieces, Latina theater has emerged as a vibrant art form whose time has come. This anthology showcases this dynamic new genre through the works of established playwrights such as Cherríe Moraga and Dolores Prida as well as talented new playwrights and performers who have emerged in the past decade such as Migdalia Cruz, Elaine Romero, and Monica Palacios.
Puro Teatro, A Latina Anthology includes a variety of theatrical genres: plays, performance pieces, puppet shows, innovative collaborations, and testimonials. It features previously unpublished plays from a broad range of experiences within the Latino/a community, including families and home, friends and community building, coming of age and empowerment, and sexual and ethnic identities. The editors' introduction provides a comprehensive survey of contemporary Latina theater, placing it in its theatrical context and examining its divergent roots. Puro Teatro, A Latina Anthology is the first book of its kind to reflect in print a diversified body of writing that turns the spotlight on some of America's most talented and prolific artists. A subsequent volume will complement this anthology with a theoretical, critical reading of Latina theater and performance.
Full Length Plays Botánica by Dolores Prida Heart of the Earth: A Popul Vuh Story by Cherríe Moraga The Fat-Free Chicana and the Snow Cap Queen by Elaine Romero
One-act Plays Las nuevas tamaleras by Alicia Mena And Where Was Pancho Villa When You Really Needed Him? by Silviana Wood Fuschia by Janis Astor del Valle
Performance Pieces Nostalgia Maldita: 1-900-MEXICO : A StairMaster Piece by Yareli Arizmendi Good Grief, Lolita by Wilma Bonet A Roomful of Men by Amparo García Crow Describe Your Work by Monica Palacios
"Battle Worn," by Laura Esparza
"Dancing with the Voice of Truth," by María Mar
"Searching for Sanctuaries: Cruising through Town in a Red Convertible," by Diane Rodríguez
"Home, Desire, Memory: There Are No Borders Here," by Caridad Svich
"Tales of a South-of-the-Border/North-of-the-Stereotype Theatre Director, by Susana Tubert
"Catching the Next Play: The Joys and Perils of Playwriting," by Edit Villarreal
Full-Length Plays, Collaborative Works Frida: The Story of Frida Kahlo by Migdalia Cruz and Hilary Blecher Memorias de la revolución by Carmelita Tropicana and Uzi Parnes
Queering Mestizaje employs theories of postcolonial cultural studies (including performance studies, queer and feminist theory) to examine the notion of mestizaje---the mixing of races, and specifically indigenous peoples, with European colonizers---and how this phenomenon manifests itself in three geographically diverse spaces: the United States, Latin America, and the Philippines. Alicia Arrizón argues that, as an imaginary site for racialized, gendered, and sexualized identities, mestizaje raises questions about historical transformation and cultural memory across Spanish postcolonial sites.
Arrizón offers new, queer readings of the hybrid, the intercultural body, and the hyphenated self, building on the work of Gloria Anzaldúa, Antonio Benitez-Rojo, Walter Mignolo, and Vera Kutzinski, while challenging accepted discourses about the relationship between colonizer and colonized. Queering Mestizaje is unique in the connections it makes between the Spanish colonial legacy in the Philippines and in the Americas. An engagingly eclectic array of cultural materials---including examples from performance art, colonial literature, visual art, fashion, and consumer products---are discussed, and included in the book's twenty-nine illustrations.
"Arrizón takes as her point of departure the connections and distinctions between the four keywords in the title (each with a long, specific, and convoluted history in its own right) while bringing together the Philippines, the Hispanophone Caribbean, and the United States to configure a map carved by the same blade of colonialism and imperialism. In its conjoining of queer, mestizaje, transculturation and performance, the pleasurable and enlightening variety of its textual examples, and its commitment to theorize desire from the space of queer mestizaje, her book makes a unique and accomplished contribution."
---Yvonne Yarbro-Bejarano, Stanford University
Alicia Arrizón is Professor of Women's Studies at the University of California, Riverside. She is author of Latina Performance: Traversing the Stage and co-editor of Latinas on Stage: Practice and Theory.
Speaking for the growing community of Latina feminist theologians, the editors of this volume write, "With the emergence and growth of the feminist theologies of liberation, we no longer wait for others to define or validate our experience of life and faith.... We want to express in our own words our plural ways of experiencing God and our plural ways of living our faith. And these ways have a liberative tone."
With twelve original essays by emerging and established Latina feminist theologians, this first-of-its-kind volume adds the perspectives, realities, struggles, and spiritualities of U.S. Latinas to the larger feminist theological discourse. The editors have gathered writings from both Roman Catholics and Protestants and from various Latino/a communities. The writers address a wide array of theological concerns: popular religion, denominational presence and attraction, methodology, lived experience, analysis of nationhood, and interpretations of life lived on a border that is not only geographic but also racial, gendered, linguistic, and religious.
Twenty-five Latina agents of change share their inspirational stories.
Celebrated Latina civil rights activist Dolores Huerta once said, “Every moment is an organizing opportunity, every person a potential activist, every minute a chance to change the world.” These are the stories of some of the Latina activists from Wisconsin who have lived Huerta’s words. Somos Latinas shares the powerful narratives of 25 activists—from outspoken demonstrators to collaborative community-builders to determined individuals working for change behind the scenes—providing proof of the long-standing legacy of Latina activism throughout Wisconsin.
Somos Latinas draws on activist interviews conducted as part of the Somos Latinas Digital History Project, housed at the Wisconsin Historical Society, and looks deep into the life and passion of each woman. Though Latinas have a rich history of community activism in the state and throughout the country, their stories often go uncelebrated. Somos Latinas is essential reading for scholars, historians, activists, and anyone curious about how everyday citizens can effect change in their communities.
In compelling first-person accounts, Latinas speak freely about dealing with serious health episodes as patients, family caregivers, or friends. They show how the complex interweaving of gender, class, and race impacts the health status of Latinas—and how family, spirituality, and culture affect the experience of illness.
Here are stories of Latinas living with conditions common to many: hypertension, breast cancer, obesity, diabetes, depression, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, dementia, Parkinson’s, lupus, and hyper/hypothyroidism. By bringing these narratives out from the shadows of private lives, they demonstrate how such ailments form part of the larger whole of Latina lives that encompasses family, community, the medical profession, and society. They show how personal identity and community intersect to affect the interpretation of illness, compliance with treatment, and the utilization of allopathic medicine, alternative therapies, and traditional healing practices. The book also includes a retrospective analysis of the narratives and a discussion of Latina health issues and policy recommendations.
These Latina cultural narratives illustrate important aspects of the social contexts and real-world family relationships crucial to understanding illness. Speaking from the Body is a trailblazing collection of personal testimonies that integrates professional and personal perspectives and shows that our understanding of health remains incomplete if Latina cultural narratives are not included.
Telling to Live embodies the vision that compelled Latina feminists to engage their differences and find common ground. Its contributors reflect varied class, religious, ethnic, racial, linguistic, sexual, and national backgrounds. Yet in one way or another they are all professional producers of testimonios—or life stories—whether as poets, oral historians, literary scholars, ethnographers, or psychologists. Through coalitional politics, these women have forged feminist political stances about generating knowledge through experience. Reclaiming testimonio as a tool for understanding the complexities of Latina identity, they compare how each made the journey to become credentialed creative thinkers and writers. Telling to Live unleashes the clarifying power of sharing these stories. The complex and rich tapestry of narratives that comprises this book introduces us to an intergenerational group of Latina women who negotiate their place in U.S. society at the cusp of the twenty-first century. These are the stories of women who struggled to reach the echelons of higher education, often against great odds, and constructed relationships of sustenance and creativity along the way. The stories, poetry, memoirs, and reflections of this diverse group of Puerto Rican, Chicana, Native American, Mexican, Cuban, Dominican, Sephardic, mixed-heritage, and Central American women provide new perspectives on feminist theorizing, perspectives located in the borderlands of Latino cultures. This often heart wrenching, sometimes playful, yet always insightful collection will interest those who wish to understand the challenges U.S. society poses for women of complex cultural heritages who strive to carve out their own spaces in the ivory tower.
Contributors. Luz del Alba Acevedo, Norma Alarcón, Celia Alvarez, Ruth Behar, Rina Benmayor, Norma E. Cantú, Daisy Cocco De Filippis, Gloria Holguín Cuádraz, Liza Fiol-Matta, Yvette Flores-Ortiz, Inés Hernández-Avila, Aurora Levins Morales, Clara Lomas, Iris Ofelia López, Mirtha N. Quintanales, Eliana Rivero, Caridad Souza, Patricia Zavella
This book examines the ways in which recent U.S. Latina literature challenges popular definitions of nationhood and national identity. It explores a group of feminist texts that are representative of the U.S. Latina literary boom of the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s, when an emerging group of writers gained prominence in mainstream and academic circles. Through close readings of select contemporary Mexican American, Puerto Rican, and Cuban American works, Maya Socolovsky argues that these narratives are “remapping” the United States so that it is fully integrated within a larger, hemispheric Americas.
Looking at such concerns as nation, place, trauma, and storytelling, writers Denise Chavez, Sandra Cisneros, Esmeralda Santiago, Ana Castillo, Himilce Novas, and Judith Ortiz Cofer challenge popular views of Latino cultural “unbelonging” and make strong cases for the legitimate presence of Latinas/os within the United States. In this way, they also counter much of today’s anti-immigration rhetoric.
Imagining the U.S. as part of a broader "Americas," these writings trouble imperialist notions of nationhood, in which political borders and a long history of intervention and colonization beyond those borders have come to shape and determine the dominant culture's writing and the defining of all Latinos as "other" to the nation.
“What the women I write about have in common is that they are all rebels with a cause, and I see myself represented in their mirror,” asserts Alicia Gaspar de Alba. Looking back across a career in which she has written novels, poems, and scholarly works about Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, la Malinche, Coyolxauhqui, the murdered women of Juárez, the Salem witches, and Chicana lesbian feminists, Gaspar de Alba realized that what links these historically and socially diverse figures is that they all fall into the category of “bad women,” as defined by their place, culture, and time, and all have been punished as well as remembered for rebelling against the “frames” imposed on them by capitalist patriarchal discourses.
In [Un]Framing the “Bad Woman,” Gaspar de Alba revisits and expands several of her published articles and presents three new essays to analyze how specific brown/female bodies have been framed by racial, social, cultural, sexual, national/regional, historical, and religious discourses of identity—as well as how Chicanas can be liberated from these frames. Employing interdisciplinary methodologies of activist scholarship that draw from art, literature, history, politics, popular culture, and feminist theory, she shows how the “bad women” who interest her are transgressive bodies that refuse to cooperate with patriarchal dictates about what constitutes a “good woman” and that queer/alter the male-centric and heteronormative history, politics, and consciousness of Chicano/Mexicano culture. By “unframing” these bad women and rewriting their stories within a revolutionary frame, Gaspar de Alba offers her compañeras and fellow luchadoras empowering models of struggle, resistance, and rebirth.
Voices from the Ancestors brings together the reflective writings and spiritual practices of Xicanx, Latinx, and Afro-Latinx womxn and male allies in the United States who seek to heal from the historical traumas of colonization by returning to ancestral traditions and knowledge.
This wisdom is based on the authors’ oral traditions, research, intuitions, and lived experiences—wisdom inspired by, and created from, personal trajectories on the path to spiritual conocimiento, or inner spiritual inquiry. This conocimiento has reemerged over the last fifty years as efforts to decolonize lives, minds, spirits, and bodies have advanced. Yet this knowledge goes back many generations to the time when the ancestors understood their interconnectedness with each other, with nature, and with the sacred cosmic forces—a time when the human body was a microcosm of the universe.
Reclaiming and reconstructing spirituality based on non-Western epistemologies is central to the process of decolonization, particularly in these fraught times. The wisdom offered here appears in a variety of forms—in reflective essays, poetry, prayers, specific guidelines for healing practices, communal rituals, and visual art, all meant to address life transitions and how to live holistically and with a spiritual consciousness for the challenges of the twenty-first century.