The Armor of Love and Hope. By Doris Mercado. Yasmeen Namazie, Editor. ISBN 978-1494245993. $24.95.
This is a joint publication of Floricanto and Berkeley Presses. Doris Mercado’s memoir is one of perseverance and reconciliation, reminiscent of Tobias Wolff’s This Boy’s Life and Ernesto Galarza’s Barrio Boy. Her story is partly one of family but also one of self-reliance, recounting her troubled childhood in Ponce, Puerto Rico and also poverty and homelessness in Massachusetts. What I most admired in the work was the author’s frankness, her ability to portray family truths so intimately and honestly. –John Paul Jaramillo, author of The House of Order Stories.
Kirkus Review: Mercado’s memoir chronicles how a middle child from a large family experiences love, forgiveness and hope despite a lifetime of abuse, neglect and abandonment in the mountains of Puerto Rico. The memoir opens with scenes of an idyllic childhood. Mercado lived in a small town outside Ponce, Puerto Rico, where her life included colorful characters in a bustling community. There were eight children at the beginning of Mercado’s story, all battling to use a single bathroom and hairbrush. Doris’ mother, Lina, worked as a seamstress. She was stern, but she encouraged 4-year-old Doris to read the newspaper.
Doris’ father was well-liked and played affectionately with the children in their chaotic but happy household. Within two years, two more boys were born into the Mercado family; both needed extensive medical attention. The strain took its toll, and finally, the family moved in with Doris’ beloved grandmother in the mountain town of Jayuya. After the move, Doris’ life deteriorated. Her mother beat her repeatedly with a broomstick, and Doris spent many days nursing badly bruised limbs. Life continued to fall apart for the Mercado clan, particularly when Doris’ paternal grandmother invited Lina and the youngest children to New York for a fresh start.
Doris and five of her siblings were left in the care of their father, although it was 14-year-old Doris who assumed chief responsibility. Within days of her mother’s departure, Doris’ father also walked out without explanation, leaving Doris and the others to fend for themselves. This living arrangement continued for another three years. Doris warned the children to keep their situation secret, so they wouldn’t alert the authorities. This profoundly sad story of neglect is told in simple, direct language. Doris’ capacity for forgiveness is astonishing, as is her single-minded focus on the love she feels for the brothers and sister left in her care. She eventually moved to the U.S., and her reunification with her parents was filled with more pain and abuse. Mercado’s reaching adulthood in one piece is remarkable; arriving with her soul intact is miraculous. A straightforward, moving story about resilience.
Between Borders: Essays On Mexicana/Chicana History. Adelaida R. Del Castillo, Editor. ISBN 0915745186. 560 pgs. Includes biblio $38.95.
The most comprehensive and complete original history of U.S. Latinas of Mexican descent written by an outstanding team of Mexican and U.S. scholars and based on copious documentary sources from both countries. Between Borders has been hailed by the scholarly review media as "the most important piece of original research on Mexicana/ Chicana ever published." This collection of essays is a smashing success in terms of organization, presentation, significance of content, and theoretical approach. The essays reflect the maturation of the field in the 1980's.
Borrowing Time: A Latino Sexual Odyssey. By Carlos T. Mock, M.D.ISBN 0-915745-54-2. . $24.95.
“Whatever your orientation, no matter your ethnicity, you’ll never be the same after a journey through this odyssey. A vivid and visceral portrayal of a sexual and political coming-of-age in today’s America—and beyond.” Laura S. Washington, Ida B. Wells-Barnett University Professor, DePaul University; Columnist, Chicago Sun-Times.
“Gay literature is rich in so many areas, yet we still have a need for strong stories from the world of Latino culture—about family, about youth, about coming out, about creating adult relationships, about AIDS. Now, Carlos Mock give us a strong Puerto Rican story that deals with all these isues.” —Patricia Nell Warren, author of The Front Runner and The Wild Man.
Cinco De Mayo: A comprehensive Illustrated History. By Roberto Cabello-Argandoña. ISBN 978-1483923970. $16.95.
"The somber reality of foreign naval invasion of Mexico by three major world powers, Spain, Britain and France constituted the prelude to the Battle of Cinco de Mayo. Spain was the first country to have the troops ready for the invasion of Mexico. General Serrano, Commanding General of Cuba, then still a Spanish possession, prepared three army divisions, who were shipped in 13 frigates and supported by 13 transport ships, all under the command of Marine Commanding General Joaquín Gutiérrez de Ruvalcaba. The Spanish troops occupied the castle of San Juan de Ultia and the Port of Veracruz on December 17, 1861. Great Britain sent a naval infantry detachment of 700 soldiers and occupied the ports of Veracruz and Tampico on January 6, 1862. On January 8, a French infantry regiment arrived comprised of nine companies, including cavalry, artillery, experienced African Zouaves, and African Escorts (Cazadores). This setting was the beginning of the conflict which led to the Battle of Puebla on Cinco de Mayo, 1862. The author provides a most detailed account of the forces and activities of the French and Mexican sides, during the last three days before, the day of and the day after the battle itself. Examines also the inspiring history of a triumphant Chicano general, Ignacio Zaragoza, (1829-1862), born in a period of international conflicts and forced to flee from his home as a youth because of the American settler's revolt in Texas in 1836. It includes nine patriotic poems (Spanish-English parallel text) written in California between 1864 and 1865 commemorating CINCO DE MAYO and published for the first time in monographic form. Unquestionably, this is the definitive history book on The Battle of Puebla on the Cinco de Mayo, 1862. "This is an amazingly interesting work of historical narrative on Cinco de Mayo dating from 1861, California 1864-1865, and its geopolitical ramifications; ably introduced with a compilation of illustrations from the period." Dr. Namazie.
Chalino: A Chronicle Play of Fulgor and Death=Una Crónica Teatral de Fulgor y Muerte. By Julián Camacho Segura. ISBN 978-1481022002. $22.95.
With “Chalino,” Julian Camacho writes about a raw, unflinching Mexican icon with an unapologetic honesty only he can provide. He excels at bringing this story to larger than life tale because he possesses one of the most experienced voices among his contemporaries.” Oscar Barajas, Author, “True Tales from the Wireless Clothesline.” Rosalino “Chalino” Sánchez was a Mexican immigrant from the Mexican state of Sinaloa who came to the US in search of opportunity. In his pursuit of perseverance his gift and talent for writing corridos for the common working class man initiated a world wind phenomena that appealed to Mexican-American youth in Los Angeles, California. Chalino’s corridos provided a cultural medium in which Chicanos identified with their own roots.
Clásicos de la Literatura Hispanoamericana Colonial en su Contexto Sociohistórico. Dr. Clary Loisel. ISBN: 978-0-915745-97-5. $24.95.
A clear and concise review of the most important Latin American Colonial writers whose work departed from Peninsular literary canons. Esta monografía va dirigida a los lectores que ya tienen un conocimiento básico de la literatura hispanoamericana colonial pero que quieren un análisis más profundo de algunas obras principales del canon. Este libro sobre la literatura colonial constituye un esfuerzo por reunir el testimonio de nueve escritores de los siglos XVI y XVII que han expresado algunas experiencias y vicisitudes principales de varios pueblos de Hispanoamérica para acercarse a su identidad nacional y artística. Seleccioné a estas figuras por sus contribuciones únicas a las letras hispanas. El tema central de este libro es la transformación y la "nativización" de los modelos peninsulares por los escritores del Nuevo Mundo. Es mi esperanza que, volviendo a estudiar a estos autores y obras, podamos comenzar a comprender mejor una pequeña parte de la enorme producción literaria de los dos siglos después de la llegada de Cristóbal Colón en 1492.
Divido el libro en dos partes principales: "El Siglo XVI: Literatura de la Conquista" y "El Siglo XVII: El Barroco, Arte Hispánico". Al principio de cada parte hay una introducción sobre el marco histórico-social así como de las corrientes estéticas de cada época. Cada uno de los nueve capítulos se dedica a las biografías y al análisis de la obra de losautores seleccionados: Hernán Cortés, Bernal Díaz del Castillo, Alonso de Ercilla y Zúñiga, El Inca Garcilazo de la Vega, Bernardo de Balbuena, Juan Ruiz de Alarcón, Juan del Valle Caviedes, Carlos de Sigüenza y Góngora y Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz. Dr. Clary Loisel
Clay Hills and Mud Pies. By Annie Mary Perez. ISBN 978-1481184809. $14.95.
Skeletons abound in this revealing but poignant biography recounting a Mexican American family’s one hundred year history in the United States. Three Memoirs in one, this San Diego Book Awards Finalist is rich with Mexican folklore and Americana. In Book One, which opens with a ghost story, the author describes her father’s life growing up motherless in Las Cruces, New Mexico. It includes early memories of sleeping in abandoned houses, working for his aunt, who was a bootlegger, riding the rails as a youth, serving in World War II, and finally, marrying her mother in February of 1946. In Book Two she describes her mother’s life growing up on a dairy farm in Mesilla, New Mexico during the Depression. It includes early memories of picking cotton as a child and the first of a series of prophetic dreams. It also includes stories of her grandmother’s encounter with the Twelve Apostles and her grandfather’s finding buried treasure. In Book Three, she describes her own life growing up in a Los Angeles barrio, early memories of domestic violence, her parents’ divorce, caring for her parents in their declining years, and ultimately, dealing with the loss. The book concludes with her father’s philosophies on youth and life. “Young people especially will benefit from this pleasant read. They will feel inspired to set their own goals.” Ambassador Julián Nava.
Competing Truths in Contemporary Latin American Literature: Narrating Otherness, Marginality, and the Politics of Representation. By Sandro R. Barros. ISBN 978-1-888205-32-9. $26.95.
The overwhelming success of the filmic adaptations of Before Night Falls by Cuban exile Reinaldo Arenas, The Virgin of the Assassins by Colombian writer Fernando Vallejo, and City of God by Brazilian author Paulo Lins attracted audiences worldwide to rediscover and rethink the content of these works as enigmatic messages of disillusionment and abjection regarding the Latin American realities they promote. The original texts' representation of sicarios, favelados, and homosexual dissidents undermines the conceptualization of the Latin American continental identity as "Other" in relation to dominant Eurocentric and North American perspectives. Competing Truths delves into the question of to what extent the fictional and autobiographical truths purported by the aforementioned bestsellers engage in the process of fixating conventional paradigms of "Third World" identity, such as poverty, violence and exclusion, as images of consumption for world audiences.
Furthermore, Competing Truths examines what constitutes truth and reality from a perspective that assesses Latin American history and culture in a contest for the very meaning of the postmodern truth. Competing Truths presents a critical reflection of three of the most compelling and successful novels emerging from the Latin American literary scene at the end of the 20th century, questioning the politics behind their historical, racial, and gendered representations. Competing Truths explores the Latin American identity within a literary fictional framework and realistic social paradigms, a dichotomy that challenges the reality of identity of the social types. Lector, The Hispanic Book Review Journal.
Comprende? The Significance of Spanish in English-Only Times. Steven W Bender. ISBN: 978-1-888205-08-4. $24.95.
Today, the contentious issue of Latino immigration has spurred backlash efforts to anoint English as the official language in federal and state government to the exclusion of Spanish and other languages, than English. Even cities have weighed in to restrict the legitimacy of Spanish in local government affairs. Last century, European immigrant groups stood accused of failing to assimilate in the American melting pot. But while European immigration has slowed, Latino immigration has surged. This steady immigration, combined with the geographical proximity that brought Latinos into the Southwest long before Anglo immigrants, assures a different cultural dynamic for Latinos than for other groups. The centuries of continued Latino occupation and then immigration have forged a unique, shared destiny between the United States and Mexico, as well as other Latin American countries. U.S. history has hosted more than a casual sharing of Mexican recipes in the kitchen; rather, a passionate and lively mating of cultures-Latino and "American." Foremost among these cultural exchanges is the influence of the Spanish language in the United States. With a foothold of several centuries, and the recent propulsion of mass media and pop culture, Spanish has significantly entered the American mainstream through the open and receptive borders of the English language.
Cuba Libre. Mentirita! By Carlos T. Mock. ISBN 978-1-888205-16-9. $25.95.
The Cuba Libre ("Free Cuba") is a cocktail made of Cola, lime, and rum. Both the cocktail and its name remain politically loaded due to the history and current status of Cuba-United States relations. The situation is further complicated by Bacardi's political involvement in Cuba. Cuba Libre is sometimes called "Mentirita" ("little lie") by Cuban exiles opposed to the current Communist government run by Fidel Castro, as a comment that Cuba is currently not free. Cuba Libre "Mentirita" is a history book. It is a different kind of history book in that it focuses on the Afro-Cuban population of the country. It traces its roots and attempts to explore their concept of "freedom". Whereas, for some, Cuba is not free, for others it is--if they define their freedom as not being dominated by the white race. This is a Cuban history book filled with firsthandaccounts and anecdotes--and takes the reader through Cuba's history from José Martí to the present regime.
The Cubans: Our Legacy in the United States: A collective biography. By Hernández, Fernando. ISBN: 978-1888205411 $23.95
This is a publication of Floricanto Press. The Cubans: Our Legacy in the United States chronicles the Cuban immigration to the United States from the 1800s to the present era. The author analyzes the impact the Cuban community has had on the cultural, economic, social, sports, and political scene in American society throughout multiple generations. Cuban immigrants have been one of the most successful communities in the United States. The book examines the contribution to baseball from Martín Dihigo to Tony Pérez and from Ernesto Lecuona to Gloria Estefan in music. In business circles the reader will discover that The Coca Cola Company, the Kellogg Company and McDonalds Corporation had Cuban-born Chief Executive Officers and that Movado watch company was owned by a refugee who fled communist Cuba. The book vividly depicts more than 250 extraordinary and intriguing men and women that make for engrossing and captivating reading.
The Cult of Jaguar. By Bonnie Hayman. ISBN 0915745585. $25.95.
Centuries ago, in the darkest jungles of Mexico, a young Mayan boy named Xichantl witnessed his father and most of his tribe follow the hallowed jaguar into the Graylands, never to be seen again. Now, a divorced mother and her two daughters from the United States go to Mexico for a summer vacation and stumble upon an ancient box that transforms their lives and could change the world. Set in the sultry and mysterious jungles of Mexico, with a backdrop of Mayan calendar, pyramids, Maya prophecies(calendario Maya, pirámides y profecías), the story revolves around several interesting characters who are after the same thing-each for a different reason. What happened to the ancient native civilizations of Mexico and Central America, which disappeared without a trace? The Mayan and Aztec cultures left important archaeological sites in Middle America before their civilizations vanished from this earth. While various theories attempt to explain these phenomena, nothing definitive has been proven, yet. Hayman's The Cult of the Jaguar, deals with this fascinating mystery and offers an intriguing and plausible answer to the question, "What really happened to the Aztecs and the Mayans, and the Cult of the Jaguar?"
Diversity: Mestizos, Latinos and the Promise of Possibilities. Amardo Rodríguez. ISBN: 978-0-915745-92-0. $18.95.
This book is about the hope that resides in brown, the color of creation. It defines brown ideologically rather than racially. That is, brown is about peoples who are increasingly defying the borders of ethnicity, nationality, sexuality, and race that limit imagination and possibility through various anxieties, insecurities, and paranoia that make us afraid of the world's ambiguity, mystery, and complexity and, in so doing, make us afraid of our differences. It is about peoples who are of borderlands-conceptual, communicational, relational, communal, theoretical, and cultural spaces, such as Spanglish and Ozomatli, which are devoted to possibility. Thus in a world where too many believe in a coming clash of civilizations and that Latino immigration poses the most serious threat to the prosperity of the U.S., this book introduces and expounds on various theoretical notions that make for new visions of the world and ultimately new ways of being the world.
Dreams. Sueños. By María del Pilar Muñoz. ISBN 978-1-888205-24-4. $22.95.
Interpretation of dreams has been practiced by mankind for thousands of years. The hermeneutics of dreams varies from culture to culture. Latino culture has always been fascinated with the mystery of dreams and has its own approach to their significance. We can learn a lot from our dreams about ourselves, our past, present and future, our fears and hopes, our community, our health, mental state, feelings and much more. Dreams is a book that will help you understand your dreams, look at the interpretations and meanings of dream symbols, learn special methods of self-dream psychoanalysis, reveal the subtle inferences and meaning of common dreams, such as falling teeth, flying, falling, chase, and more. You will also find here interpretation of special dream themes like scenes, sounds, feelings and colors, numbers, animals, food, houses, ocean, forest and etc . . . look for items and symbols that are prevalent in your dreams.
Dictatorship: The Imposition of U.S. Culture on Latin America Through Translation. Peter A. Neissa. ISBN: 978-1-888205-10-7. $24.95.
This book focuses on how a dictator or a culturally dominant power can use language to impose cultural values. As an instrument of power, language is used by a dictator to educate, induce, or manipulate a nation's citizens into acting in accordance with the ruling power's cultural values and beliefs. Jorge Zalamea's El Gran Burundún-Burundá ha muerto, Gabriel García Márquez's El otoño del patriarca, and Mario Vargas Llosa's La fiesta del Chivo draw attention to how the use of the vernacular can resist cultural imposition by employing specific words in order to represent its own culture and nature of reality. The original significance of these words is then altered in the translated text creating a new meaning determined by the dictator's or translator's ideology and usage. The new words that have substituted the original ones reveal how the construction of language defines relationships of power and resistance between a dictator and his nation, or between one culture and another, such as the relations of the United States over Latin America. The analysis of this relationship will provide an understanding of how language functions as an instrument for the imposition of power to gain or maintain cultural or political supremacy.
The Druglord. By Peter A. Neissa. ISBN 091574526. $22.95.
It is the true life story of Gonzalo Rodríguez Gacha, the drug lord of the Bogota branch of the Colombian Drug Cartel, this historical novel offers a factual and knowledgeable Colombian perspective that well connected Colombians have known for years: the real Drug Cartel, a group consisting of over two-hundred drug traffickers, met for the first time in 1976, not to discuss drugs, but to devise a solution to the kidnapping and murders inflicted upon them by the Marxist guerrillas. This led to cooperation on other matters --like cocaine. The Drug Lord, born an outcast in 1952, during Colombia's bloody civil war, rose from poverty to multi-billionaire status in the violent world of cocaine traffic. It is the gripping story of the Drug Lord's history when at age six, he witnesses the massacre of his family by the Colombian Army. It shows his involvement with the adolescent city gang, El Centro, which controlled Colombia's lucrative emerald black market, to the Cartel's development from a national to international status.
Eden to Orizaba. By Jerry Wilson. ISBN:13: 978-1726019590. $23.95 6x9 266 pages
In Jerry Wilson’s novel Eden to Orizaba, two journeys intersect at an immigration checkpoint north of the US-Mexico border in February 2009. Desperate to provide for his family and his young wife Maria, Pablo has fled the valley of his birth at the foot of Orizaba, Mexico’s highest peak, a valley ravaged by a million Smithfield Farms hogs and the swine flu epidemic they have brought. Lantry is headed the other way, dodging the wreckage of his life in Dallas and the alcoholism that has destroyed his marriage and his journalist job. Pablo gets two years in a private prison in Eden, Texas. Lantry’s stumbling quest takes him to Mexico City, and eventually to Orizaba, where after a harrowing night on the mountain, he finds and falls in love with Pablo’s wife. The two men’s paths will cross again ten months later—after Pablo’s daring escape from Eden and his return to Orizaba.
The Educational Experience of Hispanic American Women: The Broken Web. Teresa McKenna and Flora Ida Ortiz. ISBN 0942177002. $19.95.
La Mujer Latina Series. A most revealing anthology of essays and exposé on the failure of publicly funded institutions to provide and encourage the educational attainment and achievement of Hispanic American women. It also reveals that private parochial schools do by contrast a much better job in educating Hispanic women. It provides evidence that Hispanic women outperform in terms of academic achievement and aspirations Hispanic males, Anglo males and Anglo females and Blacks in parochial schools. Hispanic women are most definitely an academic success story that needs to be communicated to the public at large. Because of this success, the focus of the discussion of the education of Hispanics needs to be switched from the students to the performance of public schools. Parochial schools operate with fewer resources but a greater commitment to minority students. Hispanic American women respond to that commitment with academic excellence.
El Libro De Caló: The Dictionary of Chicano Slang. Harry Polkinhorn, Alfredo Velasco & Malcom Lambert, compilers. ISBN: 0915745194. $22.95..
The most authoritative dictionary and guide to understanding the dialect popularly spoken by Chicanos in the Southwest. It includes user's guide, concordance from the English to Caló. It includes index & concordance. Highly recommended. LA RED Columnist.
Everything We Think We Hear. By José Ángel Araguz. Leyla Namazie, Editor. ISBN 978-1-888205-60-2. $9.95.
This is a joint publication of Floricanto and Berkeley Presses.
Everything We Think We Hear is a collection of prose poems and flash fictions in the tradition of the Latin American microcuento. At turns fabulistic and true to life, these short pieces tell stories about growing up in and out of South Texas and about the role family mythology has in relating to the world. Through experiences articulated via poetic prose, this collection presents Latin@ storytelling as a way to understand the universal through the personal.
What is the meaning beyond memory’s hauntings? How does one survive the multi-faceted self fashioned from such meanings? Poet José Ángel Araguz’ unflinching collection, Everything We Think We Hear, considers these questions from all angles and gives us answers as adamantine and brilliant as the prose poems he has fashioned in his questing.
Sarah Cortéz, Councilor, Texas Institute of Letters, Author of Cold Blue Steel.
The Great Latino Revolt, Oscar Zeta Acosta, and the Birth of the Latino Insurrection. By Burton Moore. Edited by Roberto Cabello-Argandoña and Yasmeen Namazie. ISBN 978-1482773781. $14.95.
This is a joint publication of Floricanto Press and Berkeley Press. Buffalo, as he was known in the barrios of Los Angeles among street people, at the height of the riots in in the late 1960’s and 7O’s, was the epitome of the Movimiento. He was smart, rebellious, unpredictable, occasionally high on drugs, but terrifyingly honest to himself and the world. This is the story of the rage and fury that swept LA during the gestation of the Movimiento Chicano and of the remarkable life of Oscar Zeta Acosta, a radical civil-rights lawyer who defended Chicano activists, won new rights for Latinos, and challenged the LA establishment. Burton Moore, a journalist and writer who worked with Attorney Acosta, witnessed many of the events that swept Los Angeles into a new age. He recounts the famous school walk-outs, the confrontations with the Catholic Church, the arson at the Biltmore Hotel, the rebellion in the streets, the Chicano protest at UCLA, and the Moratorium Riot, which ended with the untimely death of Ruben Salazar. These events are pictured against a background of life in East Los Angeles a generation ago. It is written as a tribute to that generation and to the young men and women who were inspired by the Movimiento. The author covers the legal skirmishes orchestrated by Oscar Acosta following the riots of the late 1960’s—to free vatos y carnales from incarceration and police brutality—and provides an intimate biography replete with little known facts of his life from his youth to his untimely and mysterious death. Acosta emerges as a towering leader capable of inspiring and rallying the community in the streets, mesmerizing the TV audiences, and defending effectively the rioters in court. A restless man who was in conflict with himself, and able in the end to endure his own nightmares. Burton Moore was a renowned journalist, and social critic on the tradition of Oscar Lewis and Michael Harrington. Upon nearing the completion of this hook, he, and his family, were unexpectedly informed of his impending death of cancer. Burton Moore bravely carried on this important testimony of social injustice in the barrios of L.A. He had set to accomplish it, most elegantly. A seemingly simple, but elusive and daunting task of explaining the events and historical roots at play on a series of riots in the Mexican American community in the decades of 1970s and 1980s through the tale of the life of one of the most tenacious leaders of those volatile times, Oscar Zeta Acosta. Burton Moore has legated to his family, friends, and the Latino community in general, and the Mexican American community, in particular, which he so much loved, a clear and invaluable insight that social justice is a conditio sine qua non for social peace. Undoubtedly, he embarked on warning America that disparities of wealth, education, and opportunities, and racism will inevitably lead to periodic social disruptions. Burton Moore shall not be a vox clamantis in desertus, a lonely voice in the desert, but an unequivocal J’accuse, a historical indictment to an unjust society. He regarded nothing which concerned man as alien to his interests: homo sum: humani nil a me alienum puto. We shall keep his voice alive for years to come, and as new generations of Americans emerge, they shall learn of his message of social peace and justice. Burton Moore you shall be missed Resquiscat In Pacem, amicus noster. Roberto Cabello-Argandoña.
Heaven is Hard to Swallow =Paraísos duros de roer. By Rafael Pérez Gay. Translated in to English by Dr. Eduardo Jiménez Mayo. ISBN: 978-1-888205-29-9. $22.95.
A forlorn psychoanalyst; a cultural historian exploring the possibility of life after death; a middle-aged couple that schedules a rendezvous with a younger version of itself; a man who compensates for his phobia of death and dying with intense sadomasochistic practices; a writer who futilely explores the sexual habits and customs of Mexico City: These five short stories comprise the body of Heaven is Hard to Swallow (Paraísos duros de roer), the latest masterpiece of the phenomenal Mexican publisher, journalist and fiction writer, Rafael Pérez Gay.
Huevos y la Mujer Latina: The De-masculinization of the Macho. Julián Camacho-Segura. ISBN: 978-0-9796457-4-7 $19.95.
Huevos is a politically incorrect articulation of the plight of Latino men in this era of so called gender equity and diversity. The author contends that while White women have made progress, Latinos, particularly Mexican men, have been entirely ignored; they have become the epitome of the poor working class. Ambitious and upward mobile Latinas often look down upon Latinos, and particularly Mexican males' lackluster economic success, preferring other males. Latino males have been left out of any gender or racial discussion, yet suffer the negative highs and negative low of social conditions: Latino men have the highest work related injuries and death rates, high incarceration rates, the highest poverty even though they have the highest labor participation rates and high school dropout rates. On the lows, Latino men have the shortest life span, lowest college attendance and low high-school graduation rates and lowest income derived from full-time work. The Latino male have become the Sisyphus's of America condemned to low wages by globalization, to ignorance by mediocre, highly-politicized-unionized low-performing teachers and schools, and destined to be marginalized of any equity-political-solution. The progress of White women has maintained White power by driving the diversity dialog, praxis, and remedy away from Latino males--the working, and uneducated poor. As Latino men have been relegated to a caste style social gender structure--the hard working indigent--Latinas have been blinded into believing that feminism and Chicanisma are positive, weakening Latino traditional social fabric and support system, while simultaneously ignoring the societal divide distressing Latinos, and especially Mexican males. Blacks counted with and had the strong support of their women to fight for equality in the 1960s. Latino men, instead have no partners in this struggle. Latinas want their "freedom" away from the men, home and culture.
"Huevos! Ya era hora! In an era of such political correctness, the timing couldn't be better. Once again Julián Camacho tackles the issues that are relevant in this truly academic discipline of Latino Studies." John J. Morales Jr. Chair and Professor of Chicano Studies, L.A. Mission College
"Julián Camacho's work is thought provoking and it is bound to create deep conversations and debate. Thank you for addressing the real challenges Mexican man face everyday in US society." Marcos Ramos, College of Letters and Science. University of California, Berkeley
"An exciting and enthralling design to educate the body and stimulate the mind. Destined to be one of the most discussed books in 2007!" Oscar Barajas, Author of soon to be realized book "Tales From The Wireless Clothesline."
I Will Be An American . . . Someday Soon: The Questions & Answers to the Citizenship Test. Bloomfield, Gary L. ISBN: 978-1481012690 $10.00
This is a publication of Floricanto Press. Gary Bloomfield’s has compiled and developed a list of the most frequent questions asked for the American citizenship test administered by the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) to those applying for U.S. citizenship. This questionnaire includes the precise answer to each of its questions. Those immigrants who desire to become American Citizens will be very well served preparing themselves for this test using and studying this brief manual.
The Illegal Alien: A Dagger into the Heart of America?? By Raoul Lowery Contreras. ISBN: 0-915745-61-5. $22.95.
Illegal Alien is the most reasoned analysis to date of illegal immigration, the most controversial issue facing America, and its growing impact on the American economy and way of life. Mr. Contreras makes a historical comparison of immigration and a well-documented scrutiny of the vocal opinions of well-known anti-immigrant spoke-persons as well as those who seek unrestricted openness of our borders.
"With impeccable logic, Raoul Lowery Contreras demolishes the drivel emanating from anti-immigration fanatics - the "knuckle-dragging element within the Republican Party," as he puts it. Yet he is clear-eyed enough to also take on the "professional plantationeers" of the radical Chicano movement and their liberal sponsors on America's campuses and at activist "minority" groups.
Infinitas. Carlos T. Mock. ISBN: 978-1-888205-38-1. $19.95.
As a Puerto Rican living in the US, I no longer fit into my homeland. Every time I travel there, I'm considered un Americano. I'm always addressed in the English language. What's worse, my Puerto Rican friends who live on the Island don't seem to care about me anymore. I guess we've gone our separate ways-I've become too public with my homosexuality, while they endure best by living within the closet. On this side of the pond, in the United States, there are Puerto Ricans who have never been to Puerto Rico. They don't speak Spanish, they don't know our history or culture-yet, they declare themselves Puerto Rican. To them, I am less Puerto Rican than they because, in their eyes I didn't experience the same discrimination from the white culture while growing up as they did. So, where do I fit- what am I?
La Picardía Chicana: Latino Folk Humor. Folklore Latino Jocoso. José R. Reyna. Edited by Andrea Alessandra Cabello, M. D., with the Assistance of Gloria Canales. ISBN: 0-915745-42-9. $23.95.
Mexican American, Chicano folk literature has been of interest to folklorists and been collected incidentally, mostly as part of compilations of the longer and more prestigious standard folktale. José Reyna began his collection of jokes 1969, and some of the jokes compiled then, appeared in Stanley L. Robe’s Antología del Saber Popular . Picardía Chicana, the result of thirty years of work, contains five hundred twenty-six jokes which are reproduced here verbatim from tape recordings collected in the field. Some jokes were collected by the author as field research projects at Texas A & M University-Kingsville [1972-77] and at the University of New Mexico [1977-1984]. Others are synopses of jokes that Dr. Reyna learned over the years and took the liberty of translating to English for presentation here. Other terms used for this subject are Latino folklore. Latino jokes. Latino folk humor. Folklore Latino. Folclor latino. Mexican American Folk humor.
This book represents the best of Mexican American joke tradition. The title Picardía Chicana was selected in keeping with a well-known sixteenth-century Hispanic tradition of El Lazarillo de Tormes published originally in 1554, which spawned a new literary genre—la novela picaresca. Both the pícaro and the novela picaresca would surface in the New World—in Mexico—in the early nineteenth century (José Joaquín Fernández de Lizardi, El Periquillo Sarniento).
La revelación del Tercer Secreto de Fátima. Jorge Cancino. ISBN: 978-1-888205-39-8. $22.95.
Este libro-reportaje sobre la vida de Miguel Ángel Poblete o Karole Romanov, y las apariciones de la Virgen María en Chile, es único. Revela parte de uno de los grandes misterios registrado durante la dictatura de Augusto Pinochet –el milagro del sol, fenómeno sobrenatural idéntico al registrado en Portugal el 13 de octubre de 1917- y que hizo temblar a El Vaticano durante el reinado del Papa Juan Pablo II con ‘La revelación del Tercer Secreto de Fátima’. La jerarquía de la Iglesia Católica chilena nunca aceptó como verdadera la aparición, la tildó de escandalosa y atribuyó la autoría a su principal enemigo, el Diablo.
En cambio la Santa Sede, empleando mesura y diplomacia, respondió con un silencio activo. El entonces Joseph Ratzinger, cardenal Prefecto de la Sagrada Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe, autorizó la celebración de misas en el lugar de las visitas, permiso que no retiró en abril de 2005 cuando fue electo Papa y adoptó el nombre de Benedicto XVI. Mientras era espiada por el temido servicio secreto de Pinochet, la CIA, el M15, el Mosad y el KGB enviaron a sus mejores agentes para reunir evidencias. Fue entonces cuando obispos y teólogos acusaron a Pinochet de fabricar la aparición con la ayuda de extranjeros para distraer la atención del pueblo de las atrocidades de su régimen. El gobierno respondió diciendo que obispos comunistas habían creado un invento místico para convocar al pueblo y comenzar una revuelta. Las acusaciones se mantienen.
Latina Filmmakers and Writers: The Notion of Chicanisma through Films and Novellas. Jenny Dean. ISBN: 978-0-9796457-1-6. $24.95.
During the Chicano Movement in the 1960s and 1970s, Chicanas helped Chicanos achieve equal rights, while at the same time suffered oppression as women wihin their own race. In the 1970s, the Chicana Feminist Movement was founded to address the specific needs of Chicanas as women of color in the United States. Chicana artists began to write and produce works in which Chicanas were given a proper name, voice, and image. Soon, Chicanisma, a sense of sisterhood and feminist discourse, emerged to confront the triple oppression of race, class, and gender.
Latina Filmmakers and Writers: The Notion of Chicanisma Through Films and Novellas examines the works of seven celebrated Latinas who collectively represent a 20-year history of Chicanisma: Chicana (a film by Sylvia Morales), Puppet: A Chicano Novella (a book by Margarita Cota-Cárdenas), La Ofrenda: The Days of the Dead (a film by Lourdes Portillo and Susana Muñoz), Paletitas de Guayaba (a book by Erlinda Gonzáles-Berry), El Espejo/The Mirror (a film by Frances Salomé España) and Loving Pedro Infante (a book by Denise Chávez). These works demystify masculine power and offer realistic portrayals of Chicanas and give them a rightful name, image, and voice in American culture.
Latina Healers: Lives of Power and Tradition. By Oliva Espín. ISBN: 0-915745-49-6. $22.95.
La Mujer Latina Series "Latina Healers casts new light on the centrality of gender and migration status on the lives of Latina women. Encompassing the idiosyncrasies of individual decisions and the social context of the healers' lives, this book presents an original analysis of the relationship between gender, power, religious beliefs and social status of curanderas. It brings the scholarship on life narratives together with understandings of the impact of migration and traditional beliefs on the lives of these women. Heralding women not as passive victims of social forces, but as active and creative agents of their lives, the book's findings are valuable for mental health practitioners, feminist scholars, and all interested in the lives of Latinas." Lillian Comas-Díaz, Ph.D. Editor-in-Chief Cultural Diversity and Mental Health.
Latina Icons: Iconos Femeninos Latinos e hispanoamericanos. André, María Claudia. La Mujer Latina Series ISBN: 978-0-915745-85-2. $26.95
This book brings the most prominent Latina icons, popular female figures, and offers the most important clear description of the process of iconization of famous cherished Latin American women. It attempts to define and provide meaning to these notable women within the context of popular symbols and the function these women played in the construction of their individual and collective Latina identity. La Malinche, the movie actress María Félix, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, María Ilonza, Frida Khalo, Selena, Yemayá, Carmen Miranda, and Malena, the woman object of a most notable Tango, are among the figures discussed in this highly recommended book.
Esta colección de ensayos explora los procesos de representación y de iconización de algunas de las figuras femeninas más prominentes de América Latina. En ella se intenta definir qué significado tienen estas figuras dentro del contexto popular y determinar cuál es la función que desempeñan en la construcción de una identidad colectiva e individual. La Malinche, la actriz del cine María Félix, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, María Ilonza, Frida Khalo, Selena, Yamayá, Carmen Miranda, y Malena, la mujer centro del tango mas famoso escrito, son las figuras femeninas aquí discutidas extensivamente en este extraordinario libro.
Latino and Latina Leaders of the 21st Century: Ordinary Beginnings, Extraordinary Outcomes. Kayla García. ISBN: 978-1888205480 $24.95
This book is published jointly by Floricanto Press and Berkeley Press. Latino issues are everybody’s issues. The Latino and Latina leaders portrayed in this book have made valuable contributions to our social, legal, political and educational systems. This book provides comprehensive stories of courageous men and women who have defied expectations, overcome adversity, set precedents, and dedicated significant time and energy to helping others achieve their goals. Active locally, nationally, and internationally in a variety of professions, these individuals offer proof that ordinary or even humble origins can lead to extraordinary accomplishments. This collective biography expounds on well-known and otherwise Latino leaders who are at the front of their fields. It includes well-known individuals, such as Sonia Sotomayor, First Latina on the Supreme Court; Dolores Huerta, Union Organizer and Community Activist; Jorge Ramos, News Anchor and Advocate; John Haroldson and María Chávez-Haroldson, District Attorney and Leadership Facilitator; and Sandra Cisneros, Author and Activist. It includes, as well, many others, such as Julián Castro, Mayor of San Antonio; Nydia Velázquez, Representative for New York; Luis Gutiérrez, Representative for Illinois; Marco Rubio, Senator for Florida. It also comprises leaders in fields of education, community activism, and literary figures such as Cherríe Moraga, Advocate for LGBTQ, Latinos, and Indigenous People, and Elena Poniatowska, an internationally known ally to Latinos.
Líderes latinos del siglo XXI: Latinas y latinos que están transformando la sociedad. Kayla S. García. ISBN-13: 978-1888205527. $26.95
Los líderes y activistas latinos retratados en este libro están transformando nuestra sociedad. Han hecho contribuciones significativas a nuestros sistemas legal, político y educacional. Este texto incluye historias comprensivas de hombres y mujeres que han desafiado las bajas expectativas de sus maestros, han superado serias adversidades, han establecido importantes precedentes sociales y han dedicado muchísimo tiempo ayudando a otras personas a conseguir sus propias metas. Estos individuos siguen activos en una gran variedad de profesiones y organizaciones a nivel local, estatal, nacional, e internacional. Sus vidas constituyen pruebas irrefutables de que es posible superar obstáculos tales como la pobreza, la discriminación, las enfermedades graves, y las agotadoras responsabilidades familiares para arribar a metas sobresalientes.
Matadores: Latino Bullfighters en el Ruedo de Toros. Dale Pierce. ISBN: 978-1-888205-07-7. $23.95.
Matadores is a unique, solid, and authoritative collective biography covering the career of various Latino and a few American toreros, who performed in the old Plaza Monumental de Toros of Ciudad Juárez over the plaza’s five decades of operation. This detailed reference book includes over 200 biographies of matadores, novilleros, rejoneadores, picadores, banderilleros and even a handful of writers who were regulars in the plaza. There is an ample selection of both famous and not-so-famous names. Among the biographies covering high points of their careers are Calesero, Luis Procuna, Carlos Arruza, Armillita, the Capetillos, Fernando Dos Santos, Finito, Inclusero, García Higuras, Francisco Ruiz Miguel, Cordobés, Mario Sevilla, Caleserito, Marian Ramos, Manolo Martínez, Eloy Cavazos, Curro Rivera, Curro Leal, Geno, David Renk, Jesús Solórzano, Fabián Ruiz, Jaime Bravo, Guillermo Montes Sortibrán, Jose Antonio Gaona, Bernardo Valencia, John Fulton, Patricia McCormick, Rogelio Leduc, Fabián Barba, Gastón Santos, and many others. Mr. Pierce also pays tribute to what may well have been one of the greatest days in the Monumental bullring during the 1979 season, when a rejoneador and three mediocre toreros gave the showing of their respective lifetimes to the dreaded toros de Casablancas, the bull ranch owned by impresario Hurtado. Large, difficult to handle by inexperienced matadors and with unshaven horns, no figures would face examples of this herd. Thus, the lesser-knowns with something to gain would take chances with them. Gastón Santos, John Fulton, Bernardo Valencia and Rogelio Leduc did so, cutting a total of seven ears before the afternoon was over. Matadores is not only an authoritative reference source of toreros Latinos, but it also pays homage to the arte taurina, las faenas, to both bullfighter and bulls, to the extraordinary men who have kept and still keep alive an ancestral Hispanic cultural tradition.
Mexican American Identity. Edited by Martha E. Bernal and Phylis C. Martinelli. ISBN: 0915745259. $22.95.
Mexican American Identity is the most outstanding collection of original research and analytical discussion so far published that focuses on Mexican American ethnic identity, an important dimension of ethnicity. This title is critical for educators and policy makers who set policy or make decisions affecting the Latino/Hispanic community for it provides an empirical and cognitive basis for understanding the idiosyncratic characteristics of this group as a unique culture and vis-à-vis the larger social context. Qui ego sum? 'Who am I? and Qui tu es? Who are you? are basic human inquiries. This book discusses and sheds light on the underlying dynamics determining and shaping identity and self-image of the Mexican American as an individual and a social group.
Mexican Illegal Aliens: A Mexican American Perspective. By Rafael D. Canul, Ph.D.ISBN: 0-915745-62-3. $22.95.
Professor Canul, in this substantial, well-documented and impressive socio-political and economic analysis, focuses on the difficult and challenging motives and experiences of Mexicans illegals who have settled in the U.S. since 1920’s. He illustrates how, despite racial conflicts, the controversial influx of Mexicans have adapted and contributed to American society. His rich layers of personalized data yield portraits ranging from those who cross the borders through the desert or not infrequently hidden in cars. He describes a rail-road like protection often extended to the border-crossers by the established Mexican American community, who witnesses with pain, empathy, and disgust their mistreatment and exploitation. He provides a unique Mexican American perspective on this controversial issue of illegal immigration. Furthermore, he concludes with a forceful argument that, despite rising nativism ignited by illegal migrants, they are indispensable for many sectors of the U.S. economy.
Migrant Earth. By Ramón Mesa Ledesma. ISBN:13: 978-1888205534. $22.95
Migrant Earth very eloquently documents the travels and travails of a family of Mexican migrant workers as they wander the Western United States in the nineteen forties and fifties. These are poignant tales that paint the life and death struggle of a family living on the periphery of a dominant white culture that simultaneously loathed and needed them. They owned but the clothes on their backs and lived in rat infested, dilapidated agricultural labor camps throughout the Pacific Northwest. They worked from sunup to sundown in pesticide laced fields under scorching, unrelenting summer suns. While wandering the countryside working the fields--white society was too genteel to harvest--they dreamed of better times and the safety of a piece of land they could call home. Ultimately they were able to save enough to purchase a small thirty acre farm in Eastern Washington. But just when the hard life seemed over, his padres divorced and mamá with nine children in tow was sent back on the migrant labor circuit.
A Most Memorable Quinceañera. Una Quinceañera Muy Memorable. Concepción, Leslie. ISBN: 978-1494253776 $14.95
This is a publication of Floricanto Press. “Saying goodbye to childhood is never easy.” The magical day, when a girl can play out her own fairytale fantasy and be a princess for a day, is her Quinceañera, and for Mimi that day has finally arrived. But instead of the excitement and jubilation she is expected to feel, all she can summon is uneasy dread and anxiety about what this day means. Her parents have been planning this event her whole life and Mimi is filled with the weight of their expectations, to act like a proper lady and know what to do. She doesn't know what to do and can’t comprehend how an archaic ceremony can change the way people see her, and how she could be a woman just because the calendar marks her a day older. Mimi doesn’t want people to treat her differently and no amount of rehearsing can mask the insecurities she feels. To make matters worse her cousin, Lala, picks the day of Mimi's Quinceañera to reveal she is pregnant, and it's only been a year after her very own Quinceañera. Mimi is distraught and believes that is what happens when parents, family, and society, rush a girl into womanhood. This is all the more reason for Mimi not to accept the tradition of publically becoming a woman.
This is a coming of age story about two cousins, who are the best of friends. While her cousin, Lala is thrilled to enter womanhood, Mimi is not so enthusiastic and doesn’t feel she is ready for all the social responsibilities that come along with being a woman. The girls will learn to stick together and that the bond between family is stronger than any rite of passage. A very elaborate descriptive and story about the conflicts and tribulations in a young girls’ life as she enters womanhood. Everyone needs a Tia Emmi in their life. By Judy Paneto-Roman
Great book about the the Quinceañera culture. As a mom of a soon to be teenager, I will pass down this book to my daughter so that she can learn about the culture and the importance of family. Jessica Cortez
A most memorable story I was quickly captivated by this story, as I can certainly relate to all the drama and prepping that goes into planning "Sweet 15" Quinceañera it's something we all look forward to when coming of age, Leslie's story is definitely something I would hand my daughter prior to her Quinceañera. Veronica Paneto Mimi’s character transported me back to a time in my life where I was caught between innocence and the impending “Real” world. Her struggle is personal and heartwarmingly portrayed and I was easily wrapped up in the story. Deborah Rosa, MA
Mujeres de Conciencia/ Women of Conscience. Alvarado, Victoria. Spanish English parallel text and photography. ISBN: 978-0-9796457-7-8. 2008 $75.00 Oversize Hardbound.
This is an art book with magnificent black and white photos of prominent Latinas who have made definite and long standing contribution to the Hispanic community and the country at large. This photographic essay constitutes an important collective biography as well, with great journalistic insight and integrity into the lives of leading Latina women in the fields of education, science, literature, business, law, the arts, journalism, politics, and other fields of endeavor. This coffee table monograph, which has been published with art-book quality as a collector's edition, provides stunning artistic, B&W photographs of each subject with a parallel biographic journalistic essay in Spanish and English. The biographies explore the life-changing events of each subject, the personal mix of elements, circumstances, and values which allowed these women to set goals and objectives toward most successful careers and contributions to society.
There are 72 leading women included in this collective biography and an extraordinary photographic essay offering the most incredible array of role models to inspire, guide and motivate young Latinas.
Reflections of a Hispanic Teacher:
Resistance to class and racial oppression in the classroom. José-Enrique Figueroa. ISBN: 978-1-888205-56-5. $24.95
This book offers a much-needed progressive-critical perspective of American education based on the experiences of a Hispanic teacher dealing with real issues in the classroom. Reflecting on twenty-one years of teaching in the trenches of the South Bronx and in the City of Yonkers, his background and upbringing as a Puerto Rican immigrant, and his family's struggle to ensure he was well educated, he now sees a failed education system laying blame in all the wrong places.
Intertwining real world teaching experience with pedagogic theories, vivid childhood stories of his grandfather, real life trials and tribulations of students in the classroom, and the values and dreams Hispanic writers pour into their poetry and prose, the author shows the complexity of the social order, its influence on education, and the reasons for perceived educational failures.
Exploring pedagogic theories, we see that prevailing reform theories, such as inclusion, fail to recognize education in the context of the social order. Children need to be taught individually; their intellectual, emotional, and behavioral needs cannot fit into a one-size-fits-all model. But how can we satisfy individual needs in a non-negative context? Systems, such as MicroSociety, that contextualize schools in an economics-based environment recognize a false social order, trap children in a system that in reality is littered with racism and classism, promote consumerism and same-ism, and stymie creative expression.
Remnants of Crypto-Jews among Hispanic Americans. By Gloria Golden. Edited by Roberto Cabello-Argandoña and Yasmeen Namazie. ISBN: 978-1482786941. $24.95.
Gloria Golden, an articulate and brilliant photo-anthropologist by vocation, set to uncover the Sephardic roots in the Southwest, which was always suspected to exist, as result of the expulsion of the Sephardic Jews from Spain in 1492. Many Jews went to Portugal and Turkey, others decided to join the expeditions to the New World, particularly New Spain, as Mexico was then called. Sociologists had anecdotal evidence of the Sephardim among the Mexican American population in Colorado and New Mexico.
The remoteness of their hilly geography made a perfect setting for the Sephardic Jews to hide and be left alone from the shadows of the Inquisition. Living in disguise meant to behave like Christians in public and practice their Jewish customs at home, away from prying eyes. As centuries went by, that furtive life became merely partial memories and home behavioral practices that were very different from those of their Christian neighbors. Today many of the Sephardim live among the Hispanic, Mexican American and Latino, populations in the Southwest. Hidden deep in the heart of the American Southwest among the larger Hispanic population are descendants of the Sephardim, Jews from Spain and Portugal.
Five hundred years after their expulsion from Spain remnants of Judaism are still practiced within Southwestern Hispanic communities. Often unaware of their origins, conversos have revealed, through oral history, how the ancestral faith of the Crypto-Jews has been passed on from generation to generation.
The Secret of a Long Journey. By Sandra Shwayder Sánchez. Edited by Yasmeen Namazie and Roberto Cabello-Argandoña. ISBN 978-1480285033. $24.95.
The Secret of a Long Journey is the story of a cherished and dangerous secret, passed along from generation to generation through many lands and many perils: from Spain to Flanders across the ocean to Vera Cruz and up through the desert to what is now New Mexico. In magical realist style, this chronicle takes the Sephardic characters through the terrors of the Inquisition, shipwrecks and hurricanes, sandstorms and wars, lost loves and illness, all culminating when Lois Gold, a passionate court advocate for the disenfranchised, discovers the legacy of her lost grandfather.
“In The Secret of a Long Journey, Sánchez moves effortlessly through time and place with a mesmerizing plot. Generations come and go and each one propels the next. Her fascinating characters are solidly grounded in vivid natural or urban environments. Whether it is 16th century Flanders or 20th century Denver, you never lose the thread of the story, thanks to the author’s mastery of craft and her powerful imagination. The characters will lodge in your mind long after you’ve read the book . . .” Gloria DeVidas Kircheimer, author: Goodbye Evil Eye, and Amalie in Orbit.
“Sandra Shwayder Sánchez explores in intimate detail the experiences and emotions of her characters as she takes the reader on a vividly imagined journey from the old world to the new, through history to modern times. In poetic prose that summons all of our senses, Sánchez creates and maintains unique voices that speak through the generations and the blending of cultures and faiths.” Linda LeBlanc, author Beyond the Summit.
The Secret of a Long Journey is a lyrical, textured, beautifully told tale of lives lived and lost and secrets kept and shared. This mesmerizing page-turner takes readers on a journey from 16th century Flanders and North America’s “New Spain” to 20th century America. Steeped in history and rooted in an insightful novelist’s understanding of the complex, fragile, and sometimes nefarious emotions that embody the human psyche, Sánchez weaves the story of one family’s unwavering, intergenerational commitment to cherish and transmit its cultural and spiritual heritage. Set against the backdrop of Inquisitional Europe and the early history of the Spanish rule of the American southwest, The Secret of a Long Journey chronicles the lives of painters and healers, explorers and adventurers, lawyers and cowboys . . . Along the way, it sheds light on the intricate ways Sephardic Jews, Spanish, Native American, Mexican and Anglo cultures often collided, sometimes comingled, and ultimately coexisted, finding a way to transmute ancient traditions into contemporary secular justice and compassion. Mary Saracino, author of The Singing of Swans (Pearlsong Press 2006), Voices of the Soft-bellied Warrior (Spinsters Ink Books 2001), Finding Grace (Spinsters Ink 1999) and No Matter What (Spinsters Ink 1993). Sandra Shwayder Sánchez is a native of Denver, Colorado and a retired attorney who now resides in the small mountain town of Nederland with her husband of nearly twenty years, John Edward Sánchez.
Sobre tus ojos dormidos . . . Artículos críticos sobre la obra de Elías Nandino. On your sleeping eyes . . . Critical articles on the work of Elías Nandino. Gerardo Bustamante Bermúdez. ISBN: 978-1888205-33-6 . $28.95.
Este libro descubre varias facetas no estudiadas sobre la obra del poeta Elías Nandino, considerado por algunos como el “último de los Contemporáneos”. Se trata del primer libro colectivo que relee la obra del poeta mexicano. Sobre tus ojos dormidos . . . Artículos críticos sobre la obra de Elías Nandino es una referencia obligada para los estudiosos de la obra del poeta, pues se trata de rigurosos estudios que nos permitirán estudiar la obra del vate coculense a la luz de otras voces literarias de su época: Xavier Villaurrutia, Salvador Novo, Jorge Cuestas, Gilberto Owen, Bernardo Ortiz de Montellano, entre otros exponentes de la lírica mexicana del siglo XX.
Este libro remoza la lectura del poeta, médico, promotor cultural e intelectual jalisciense destacado que había sido olvidado por la crítica literaria. Gerardo Bustamante Bermúdez. Crítico y especialista en la obra de Elías Nandino; estudioso de la narrativa mexicana contemporánea. Es autor de varios artículos y estudios sobre escritores: Rosario Castellanos, Elena Garro, Cristina Rivera Garza, Amparo Dávila, Helena Paz Garro, Carlos Fuentes, Reinaldo Arenas, Enrique Serna, entre otros. Es compilador del libro De dolores y placeres. Entrevistas con Elías Nandino entre 1954-1993, UACM-Secretaría de Cultura del Gobierno del Distrito Federal, 2009.
Sus líneas de investigación son los textos autobiográficos de escritores mexicanos del siglo XX, así como los estudios sobre masculinidades aplicados a la literatura. Su tesis doctoral versa sobre el proyecto autobiográfico de Elías Nandino. Actualmente prepara un libro sobre la obra ensayística de este autor.
Elías Nandino nació en Cocula, Jalisco en 1900 y murió en 1993 en la ciudad de Guadalajara. Fue poeta y médico, de ahí que su poesía tenga siempre un dilema sobre los asuntos de la vida y la muerte. Fue autor de más de veinte libros de poesía en los que trabajó temas como la muerte, la vida, el homoerotismo, la duda sobre Dios y la fe. El poeta de la vida, el amor, la muerte y el sexo gozoso es estudiado a profundidad a través de los textos que aquí se recopilan.
Nandino fue una pieza clave en el mundo intelectual mexicano del siglo pasado; apoyó a los jóvenes escritores de ese momento a través de su revista Estaciones y de otras publicaciones periódicas de México. This book uncovers various aspects previously unstudied about the work of the poet Elías Nandino, considered by some to be the “last of the Contemporáneos.”
It is the first book to re-read the work of the Mexican poet. On your sleeping eyes . . . Critical articles on the work of Elías Nandino is a necessary reference for students of the poet’s work. It includes rigorous research that allows us to study the work of the poet from Cocula in light of other literary voices from his time: Xavier Villaurrutia, Salvador Novo, Jorge Cuesta, Gilberto Owen, Bernardo Ortiz de Montellano and other exponents of Mexican lyricism of the Twentieth Century. This book takes a whole new look at reading the poet, physician, cultural promoter and intellectual from Jalisco who had previously been forgotten by literary critics.
Shattered Dreams: The story of a historic ICE raid in the words of the detainees. Gibbs, Virginia; and Luz María Hernández, Editors. ISBN: 978-1491086377 $25.95
This is a joint publication of Floricanto and Berkeley Presses. In May of 2008, the small town of Postville, Iowa, experienced an Immigration Raid in which nearly 400 Latino immigrant workers in the meat processing industry were arrested. The Postville Raid, the second largest in U.S. history, was the first and last of its kind. Instead of immediately deporting the undocumented, they were tried in groups of ten on charges of identity theft and then sent to jail for 5 ½ months. A group of 40 women were arrested but released with GPS monitors on their ankles so that they could care for young children, and were held in Postville for over a year during which they were not allowed to work to support their families. These are the life stories, told in their own words, of some of the workers who were affected by the raid. The immigrant families, with special emphasis on women and children, share the stories of their childhoods, the decision and the journey to “El Norte,” working at the meat processing plant, and the raid and its aftermath. These true stories vividly portray the fear, violence and harassment that is the lot of those who are “undocumented,” but also shows their strength of spirit in the face of poverty-stricken childhoods, dangerous border crossings, inhumane working conditions, and as they experienced the U.S. legal and penal system. "The long-silenced voices of the humble migrants victimized by the infamous federal raid at Postville, Iowa are recovered at last in this volume, where they coalesce into a gentle mallet that strikes at the gong of our national conscience, issuing a wake-up call to our humanity. Our only dignified answer should be fair and lasting immigration reform." --Erik Camayd-Freixas, author of U.S. Immigration Reform and its Global Impact: Lessons from the Postville Raid.
Soul Twins: A Latino Journey From The Edge To Self-redemption. Oscar Vega Romero. ISBN: 978-0-915745-93-7. $22.95.
Vega Romero contends “My view as a Mexican is that my people are hard workers who possess a strong desire to succeed in life. I was only one of the many Mexicans willing to face the prospect of death and of leaving a mother bereft, by crossing the United States border illegally, in the attempt to make their dreams reality. I left my country without knowledge of the many dangers involved, but with the help of God, I arrived in the United States of America, without authorization of the U.S. government. I asked myself what I wanted for my future and I realized I desired many things. However, their realization within the context of my current lifestyle seemed impossible for I had no concept of the meaning of life. I was living life like a blind man without the ability to see or to enjoy each moment of my existence. I made mistakes that caused me to be locked up behind bars. I've had to spend part of my life in the chaos of an institution, far away from my home country and my loved ones. I thought I was a failure. I didn't know who I could become. I finally realized that no matter what situation I was in I was still blessed in so many ways. One of the greatest blessings was the ability to make choices. This understanding helped me to open my eyes little by little. The quality of my existence began to change, not only for me but for others around me. I discovered the joy of sharing my new-found positive thinking with the intent of making others smile. This book is designed to help men and women improve their lives through positive ideas and the true experiences from which they came. The heartfelt honesty and passion that I have put into this book convinces me that it has the power to touch any heart, no matter the race or color of skin. Mexicans and Latin Americans will continue to be my inspiration to write and paint.
Steven Isn't Normal. By Marco A. Vasquez.ISBN:13: 978-1888205510 $22.95
Steven isn’t normal. But, then again, nobody is. Still, ask anyone, and they’d tell you that Steven is retarded--because he is. Steven is a retard by definition and by practice. Mostly, he is a retard by circumstance. It’s an epithet given to Steven by his community: his neighbors, his peers, his family. It is a title that has been embedded in his psyche--a designation that has dictated his absurd existence. This absurdity is exemplified by his determination to fulfill his quest: the killing of his mother. Steven is convinced that his mother is plotting the elimination of the one thing that Steven holds dear: his bottle collection--the hundreds of bottles, from which he has meticulously removed the labels--which he has perfectly sorted and aligned against a secluded wall near the railroad tracks. On his journey, Steven’s chaotic family history is revealed, as Steven encounters an array of grotesque characters that, in their efforts to reinforce the label that burdens Steven, they exhibit their own retardation that has been, until then, successfully camouflaged and ignored by their own complacency.
Marco A. Vasquez' writing is always authentic, fresh, and steeped in pathos. It never fails to surprise with its insights into the darkest and most humorous moments of ordinary people . . . He's one of my favorite writers.
--John D. Payne, Professor of English
Tina Modotti's Mexico: A Tale of Love & Revolution. Bonnie Hayman. ISBN: 0-915745-40-2. $29.95. Hardbound.
Hayman situates Tina Modotti (1896-1942) profoundly within her social period from her 1913 emigration to San Francisco to a full-fledged member of the intellectual wing of the Mexican Communist Party. She is one of the most important contemporary women of Mexico. She became the lover of Cuban revolutionary Julio Antonio Mella and when he was murdered, Modotti became the main suspect. When a failed assassination attempt was made against the Mexican president, Pascual Ortiz Rubio, she was accused and deported.
She returned to Mexico many years later and lived alone in a small cottage until her mysterious death in a taxi at age 46. Octavio Paz claimed that Tina Modotti belonged “more to the history of passions than to the history of ideologies,” Hayman propounds that Modotti lived a full life of her own choice, and that politics, ideology, and history were never paramount to her own personal life—an indescribable story of fame, style, gossip and turmoil.
The Tortilla Maker:
A Social and Historic Mexican American
Narrative. Jesús Ignacio Loreto de Arvizu. ISBN:13: 978-1500739874. $24.95
Ignacia Arvizu, a strong-willed Mexican teenager lost her father, a wealthy cattleman. Bandidos murdered him and stole the family fortune including all personal possessions; he left behind only an empty hacienda. Ignacia’s mother became destitute and had no choice but to find homes for her bright and attractive daughters. In 1913, Ignacia reluctantly entered--forced by her desperate mother--into an arranged marriage to an older, prosperous rancher in Sonora, Mexico. Ignacia, affectionately called Nana by her grandchildren, fought her abusive husband to protect her five children, among them Ramona, the author’s mother. Nana’s husband suddenly died of pneumonia leaving her once again destitute and now with five small children of her own. Nana--determined to find a better life--walked over a hundred miles with her children in tow for weeks, to reach the nearest city. This brave and exciting memoir recounts Nana’s, her daughter Ramona’s, and (Ramona’s son) the author Jesus’s amazing journey from third-world poverty to American prosperity.
The Unfortunate Passion of Hermann Broch. José María Pérez Gay. Dr. Eduardo Jiménez, Translator. ISBN: 978-0-9796457-3-0. $22.95.
Having earned its author, José María Pérez Gay, the Austrian Cross of Honor for Arts and Sciences (first class), this acclaimed, concise biography focuses on novelist Hermann Broch's preoccupation with his Austrian-Jewish heritage and examines his obsession with human morality, social and moral decadence and mass psychology, specifically, in relation to the tragic historical events of the first half of the twentieth century. In contrast to Franz Kafka's worldwide fame, the effect that Broch (and his colleague Robert Musil) had on the literary world outside Central Europe has remained, until quite recently, rather unappreciated.
At the root of his profound literary achievement is his analytical clairvoyance concerning the crisis of values that would culminate in the ignominious catastrophes of the Second World War.
Valley Rising: A South-Texan’s Journey from the Migratory Fields to Successful Eye Surgeon. Gilberto Aguirre, M.D. ISBN 13: 978-1888205503 $25.95.
This is a powerful reflection—of a sincere man dedicated to the betterment of his Mexican American people—on the very deep, personal, structural and historical root causes of segregation and its dehumanizing effects. A personal and intimate story of the life of Gilberto Aguirre growing from infant to successful physician. From living in the barrio to a respectful neighborhood, you meet his family, friends, teachers, coaches and fellow workers that make up his multiply divided world of many social, economic and racial tensions. You experience the agonies and the joys, the frustrations and dreams, the painful insults and encouraging moments, and most of all the hard work fueled by the deep commitment to overcome the inferiority complex by achieving success without losing his Mexican American soul.
Waves of Recovery: The Life of an Advocate of Latino Civil Rights. Maurice Jourdane. ISBN: 978-0-915745-95-1. $22.95.
This a riveting personal account of Maurice Jourdane--currently a Superior Court Judge and a member of the Jerry Brown's California Attorney General's Office--leading to his legal representation and advocacy for farm workers and César Chávez's organizing efforts. Mo's life reads like a Greek mythic tale in which the hero suffers and endures moral and physical endurance in his quest, his now legendary legal fights and successes against the powerful California growers and agricultural interests. This biography is a testament to human strength in behalf of justice for Latinos. The success of César Chávez's civil rights movement and union organizing efforts cannot be fully understood without knowledge of the life and sacrifices of Maurice Jourdane, El Cortito. His legal successes, at great personal costs, solidified Chávez's leadership and prepared the way for the consolidation of the Farm Workers' Union, and ultimately for the farm workers to prevail against the powerful political and economic interests of the California growers. Roberto Cabello-Argandoña, Editor.