All posts under literature

An Interview with Roberto G. Fernández

Roberto G. Fernández is a Cuban American writer whose work across the past three decades has presented a fragmented but expansive landscape of the Cuban American community in Miami and beyond. His work is populated by a recurring cast of carnavalesque characters who present a fluid and humorous depiction, and a thoughtful

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Book Review: The Year 200

The Year 200 by Agustín de Rojas Translated by Nick Caistor and Hebe Powell Published July 12, 2016 Restless Books There’s a reason that Agustín de Rojas is described as the grandfather of Cuban science fiction. I read all 500+ pages of The Year 200, in an excellent new English translation by Nick

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Book Review: Tace Hedrick’s Chica Lit

In her book Chica Lit: Popular Latina Fiction and Americanization in the Twenty-First Century, Tace Hedrick draws attention to a subgenre of women’s fiction that has grown increasingly popular in the midst of recent US obsession with all things Latina/o: chica lit. Right alongside the glorification of the breakfast taco and

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Sandra Cisneros at the Texas Book Festival

If I wanted, I could write an entire blog post on Sandra Cisernos’ voice. For a 60 year-old woman who has experienced so much (I mean, she has a memoir out–you only write a memoir if you’ve lived through a few things), I assumed she would have this antique, wisdom-coated,

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Reading Junot Díaz with Incarcerated People

I appreciate the fact that my first teaching experience as a graduate student was in a jail. Through an initiative started by the Graduate Comparative Literature Students (GRACLS) organization, I volunteered to teach a Reading World Literature course at the Travis County Correctional Complex (TCCC), a pre-trial facility (a jail

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Central America(ns) in Chicana Literature

As promised in my last post, I am moving along from the current views on Central American immigration and «unaccompanied minors» to discuss Central America, Central Americans, and Central American-Americans in literature. My argument today will be focused particularly on Central America as a literary symbol, particularly in the works

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Musings on Grandmothers and the Space of Storytelling

The other day in my Latin American Cultures, Environment and Development class, we participated in a story-telling activity with the guide of a representative from Pachaysana, an NGO working out of Ecuador. We did a series of slightly awkward activities that included making human sculptures and moving around the room

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Pterodactilo Bloggers At Large

Did you know that in addition to being talented bloggers, the writers at Revista Pterodáctilo are active scholars? If you’re intrigued by what you’ve read on the Pterodáctilo blog, consider following up with some of these academic articles produced by our writers in the past year: Adriana Pacheco has published two

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A reflection on Junot Díaz’s «MFA vs. POC»

Image by Joey L. http://shelf-life.ew.com/2012/02/27/junot-diaz-third-book/

I hope we have all seen the recent Junot Díaz article in the New Yorker, “MFA vs. POC,” about the unbearable whiteness of MFA programs; his ideal syllabus, posted on Slate; and a host of responses to his charge across the internet. As I prepare to move to Cornell for

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Gabo vs. A Lifetime of Absolute Normalcy

Remembering Gabriel García Márquez, Edwidge Danticat writes: I am often surprised when people talk about the total implausibility of the events in García Márquez’s fiction. Having been born and lived in a deeply spiritual and extraordinarily resourceful part of the Caribbean, a lot of what might seem magical to others

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Recalling Eréndira and Thinking of García Márquez

Many years ago when I changed my undergraduate major from art history to Spanish in order to be able to test out of several lower-division Spanish courses and use my art history major courses as electives, I had no idea the impact this decision would have on the rest of

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Una llovizna de minúsculas flores

Entonces entraron al cuarto de José Arcadio Buendía, lo sacudieron con todas sus fuerzas, le gritaron al oído, le pusieron un espejo frente a las fosas nasales, pero no pudieron despertarlo. Poco después, cuando el carpintero le tomaba las medidas para el ataúd, vieron a través de la ventana que

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Crossing Disciplines

In my last post, I wrote about the limits of academic writing, and asked what to do when scholarly forms are insufficient. This week, inspired by a talk by Elijah Meeks at the TXDHC conference (that’s «Texas Digital Humanities Consortium conference), I am writing about interloping. What do you do when

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Octavio Paz: a 100 años de su nacimiento

Hace varios años saliendo del palacio de Bellas Artes en la Ciudad de México, me encontré de frente con Marie-José Tramini, viuda de Octavio Paz. Nunca la había visto en persona y me causó un ligero sentimiento amargo, especialmente porque soy admiradora de la obra y el pensamiento de Elena

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