Criticism in the Borderlands

Studies in Chicano Literature, Culture, and Ideology

Criticism in the Borderlands

Post-Contemporary Interventions

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Book Pages: 312 Illustrations: Published: May 1991

American Studies, Chicanx and Latinx Studies, Literature and Literary Studies > Literary Theory

This pathbreaking anthology of Chicano literary criticism, with essays on a remarkable range of texts—both old and new—draws on diverse perspectives in contemporary literary and cultural studies: from ethnographic to postmodernist, from Marxist to feminist, from cultural materialist to new historicist.
The editors have organized essays around four board themes: the situation of Chicano literary studies within American literary history and debates about the “canon”; representations of the Chicana/o subject; genre, ideology, and history; and the aesthetics of Chicano literature. The volume as a whole aims at generating new ways of understanding what counts as culture and “theory” and who counts as a theorist. A selected and annotated bibliography of contemporary Chicano literary criticism is also included.
By recovering neglected authors and texts and introducing readers to an emergent Chicano canon, by introducing new perspectives on American literary history, ethnicity, gender, culture, and the literary process itself, Criticism in the Borderlands is an agenda-setting collection that moves beyond previous scholarship to open up the field of Chicano literary studies and to define anew what is American literature.

Contributors. Norma Alarcón, Héctor Calderón, Angie Chabram, Barbara Harlow, Rolando Hinojosa, Luis Leal, José E. Limón, Terese McKenna, Elizabeth J. Ordóñez, Genero Padilla, Alvina E. Quintana, Renato Rosaldo, José David Saldívar, Sonia Saldívar-Hull, Rosaura Sánchez, Roberto Trujillo



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Author/Editor Bios Back to Top

Table of Contents Back to Top
Acknowledgments ix

Foreword: Redefining American Literature / Roland Hinojosa xi

Editors' Introduction: Criticism in the Borderlands 1

Part I. Institutional Studies and the Literary Canon

Narrative, Ideology, and the Reconstruction of American Literary History / Ramón Saldívar 11

The Rewriting of American Literary History / Luis Leal 21

The Theoretical Subject(s) of This Bridge Called My Back and Anglo-American Feminism / Norma Alarcón 28

Part II. Representations of the Chicana/o Subject: Race, Class, and Gender

Imprisoned Narrative? Or Lies, Secrets, and Silence in New Mexico Women's Autobiography / Genaro Padilla 43

Body, Spirit, and the Text: Alma Villanueva's Life Span / Elizabeth J. Ordóñez 61

Ana Castillo's The Mixquiahuala Letters: The Novelist as Ethnographer / Alvina E. Quintana 72

Fables of the Fallen Guy / Renato Rosaldo 84

Part III. Genre, Ideology, and History

The Novel and the Community of Readers: Rereading Tomás Rivera's Y no se le tragó la tierra / Héctor Calderón 97

Ideological Discourses in Arturo Islas's The Rain God / Rosaura Sánchez 114

Conceptualizing Chicano Critical Discourse / Angie Chabram 127

Sites of Struggle: Immigration, Deportation, Prison, and Exile / Barbara Harlow 149

Part IV. Aesthetics of the Border

Chicano Border Narratives as Cultural Critique / José David Saldívar 167

On Chicano Poetry and the Political Age: Corridos as Social Drama / Teresa McKenna 188

Feminism on the Border / From Gender Politics to Geopolitics / Sonia Saldívar-Hull 203

Dancing with the Devil: Society, Gender, and the Political Unconcious in Mexican-American South Texas / José E. Limón 221

Works Cited 237

Selected and Annotated Bibliography of Contemporary Chicano Literary Criticism 260

Index 275

Contributors 287
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Paper ISBN: 978-0-8223-1143-0 / Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-1137-9
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