"Chicano writers from El Paso are the most progressive, open-minded, far-reaching, and inclusive writers of them all."

Octavio Romano

Friday, February 25, 2011

Gadaffi, Gadhafi, Kadafi, Qaddafi, Khadafy: Will the Real Spelling Please Stand Up

I'm working on the El Paso Writers Update folks, so hopefully I can post it tomorrow (Sat.).

Meanwhile, for your humor:

Dear NPR:

My brother-in- law told me about this in our initial run in with Gaddafi in the 1980s, "the press does not know how to spell his name." Who's right?: BBC says "Gaddafi," NPR says "Gadhafi," USAToday says "Gadhafi"; Washington Post says "Gaddafi"; La Jornada says "Kadafi"; Associated Press says "Gadhafi"; New York Times says "Qaddafi". I though it might be a UK English vs. US English, but apparently not.


Raymundo Eli Rojas


Response to Message #251463:

Dear Raymundo,

Thank you for contacting NPR.

We are grateful for your comments to NPR News. Your feedback is important to us, and your thoughts have been noted. As we know it there are about 112 spellings of his name.  NPR usually follows the Washington Post when there are spellings variations of proper names.  However, the Washington Post changed their choice for Gadhafi a few years ago, but NPR decided not to match and stayed with the spelling orginally spelling.

Here is also another reason NPR uses the particular spelling:

The Associated Press

May 16, 1986, Friday, PM cycle

Minnesota Second-Graders Get Letter from Khadafy

SECTION: Domestic News

LENGTH: 484 words

Youngsters who wrote to Moammar Khadafy as part of a class project have gotten a reply in which the Libyan leader condemned last month's U.S. bombing and said President Reagan "should be toppled and tried.""He told us stuff about President Reagan and how he doesn't like him," was the way Jestin Tyler, 8, described the letter that he and other second-graders at Maxfield Magnet School received Thursday.
In his letter to Khadafy, Jimmy Xiong had written: "Dear Col. Khadfy, I am so sorry that your little daughter died and can I ask you a favor? Could you stop bombing us, OK? And we'll stop bombing you.""Dear Col. Khadafy, Why are you bombing the U.S.A.? Can't you think of a better way to solve the problem? Well I can... Write letters!", wrote Daniel Barbosa.
The class also wrote to President Reagan, but has yet to receive a reply, teacher Jill Swanson told the St. Paul Pioneer Press and Dispatch.
"I would expect we would hear from the president," said Ms. Swanson. "I would hope we would get something more personal from him.""Dear President Reagan, Hi," wrote Leslie Garrett. "I have an idea instead of Libya and our state bombing each other, you and Col Khadafy can set up a time and day to talk to each other about it. So if you don't take my idea, I hope you figure out some way without hurting or fighting."Khadafy's typewritten letter was on white paper trimmed in green and decorated with Libyan political slogans written in Arabic, French and English. The grammar and spelling were imperfect. It was signed in Arabic script over Khadafy's typed name: Colonel Moammar El-Gadhafi.
"Dear freind," the letter said, "We received your kind letter in which you condemned the american barbarian aggression against our country and our people. We appreciate your deeply feelings towards us."The letter went on to praise Libyan bombing victims as "martyrs for the cause of Allah," and urge that "children murders Reagan and (British Prime Minister Margaret) Thatcher should be toppled and tried."The letter defended Arab unity and Palestinian liberation and disavowed responsibility for terrorist actions in Europe and the Middle East.
The students' letter-writing project was started the day after the April 14 air raid.
"A lot of the kids were talking about it, wondering what we could do besides more bombing," said Ms. Swanson, a 10-year teaching veteran. "Whenever a child wants to know what's going on in the world, I try to capitalize on it." So the class fired off letters to the men in charge, Reagan and Khadafy.
Ms. Swanson sent letters to Reagan via U.S. Sen. Dave Durenberger, asking that he forward them to the president. In a reply dated May 2, Durenberger said he has encouraged Reagan to respond.
The letters for Khadafy were mailed to an address in the Libyan capital of Tripoli. "I just called the public library and asked for his address," Ms. Swanson said

NPR is always delighted to hear from listeners.

Thank you for listening, and for your continued support of public broadcasting. For the latest news and information, visit NPR.org.
NPR Services

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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

En nuestro mexico febrero 23 dejo carranza pasar americanos, por Ignacio Lopez Tarso

Nuestro Mexico febrero 23

Pos que pensarían los norteamericanos que combatir era un baile de carquís."


What better day thing to post Ignacio Lopez Tarso's rendition of "La Persecución de Villa" ("Nuestro Mexico febrero 23")

En nuestro México, febrero veintitrés,
dejó Carranza pasar americanos:
dos mil soldados, doscientos aeroplanos,
buscando a Villa, queriéndolo matar.

Después Carranza les dijo afanoso:
si son valientes y lo quieren combatir,
concedido, les doy el permiso,
para que así se enseñen a morir.

Comenzaron a echar expediciones,
los aeroplanos comenzaron a volar,
por distintas y varias direcciones,
buscando a Villa, queriéndolo matar.

Los soldados que vinieron desde Texas
a Pancho Villa no podían encontrar,
muy fastidiados de ocho horas de camino,
los pobrecitos se querían regresar.

Los de a caballo ya no se podían sentar,
más los de a pié no podían caminar;
entonces Villa les pasa en su aeroplano
y desde arriba les dijo: Gud bay.

Cuando supieron que Villa ya era muerto,
todos gritaban henchidos de furor:
ahora sí, queridos compañeros,
vamos a Texas cubiertos con honor.

Mas no sabían que Villa estaba vivo
y que con él nunca iban a poder;
si querían hacer una visita
hasta la sierra lo podían ir a ver.

Comenzaron a lanzar sus aeroplanos,
entonces Villa, un buen plan les estudió:
se vistió de soldado americano
y a sus tropas también las transformó.

Mas cuando vieron los gringos las banderas
con muchas barras que Villa les pintó,
se bajaron con todo y aeroplanos
y Pancho Villa prisioneros los tomó.

Toda la gente de Chihuahua y Ciudad Juárez
muy asombrada y asustada se quedó,
sólo de ver tanto gringo y carrancista
que Pancho Villa sin orejas los dejó.

Que pensarían los “bolillos” tan patones
que con cañones nos iban a asustar;
si ellos tienen aviones de a montones
aquí tenemos lo mero principal.

Todos los gringos pensaban en su alteza
que combatir era un baile de carquís,
y con su cara llena de vergüenza
se regresaron en bolón a su país.

 Carranza: "si son valientes y lo quieren combatir,
concedido, les doy el permiso,
para que así se enseñen a morir."

Pershing: "...ahora sí, queridos compañeros,
vamos a Texas cubiertos con honor."

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Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Lalo Delgado: Some Not Too Objective Observations on Chicanos and the Draft

Abelardo B. "Lalo" Delgado, Poet Laureate of Aztlan

Some Not Too Objective Observations on the Chicano Movement and the Draft
It is a damn shame that to get the few points for a civil service job in the post office, a dozen Chicanos have to die, so that the thirteenth can return to get it

The Movement – The Draft
by Abelardo B. Delgado
Nothing can point to the determination of the Chicano youth to say enough to old abuses than to see them give the old draft board the finger. 

Chicanos are still known for their ability to fight and die in Korea, Vietnam, Japan, Germany, and so, it comes as a surprise to many, the sudden turn of face. 

A neat pile of medals is about all that was left of all Chicano contributions in those wars and those with medals, returning home, saw that those acts of heroism had not created one iota of social change and attitudes towered them, by the dominant society. For them, it was kind of late to do anything about it since they already had served; but for the youth today, it is a whole new ballgame and they're not playing.

I could burden the reader with statistic to point too, the disproportionate representation of Chicanos and Blacks in the Vietnam struggle, but I will not. You can, for yourself, do a better job by looking into your own community, by reading of so-and-so killed in action, who was from your barrio, or by merely looking into the colleges around the country, and seeing who is attending those colleges. 

Even the peace movement, without realizing or wanting to, has produced a hardship on Chicanos, since the Anglo kid refused to go and goes to Canada or Sweden, or merely gets lost in the country, forcing draft boards to dig deeper into the Chicano communities, for quotas must be met -- one way or another.

I'm sure you have heard it said that even in the battle ground, a reverse discrimination does exist, by placing Chicanos on the front lines and protecting the “gueros” in the safe zones. This of course, is a damn serious charge to make against the armed forces, but it so happens that it is not I who make it from where I sit, but from many returning from there who know what they are saying. 

I'm sure other discrepancies related to the Chicano's level of education upon entering the service do exist, limiting their choice and destining them to serve in less rewarding capacities.

Moratoriums and draft resistance movements within the Movement indicate the level of reluctance to serve in a gringo war which makes no sense, and to defend the country from the threat of Communism when a defense needs to be initiated right at home. A defense against poverty, disease, homelessness, ignorance, bigotry, and apathy is needed. 

Awareness of these deficiencies is more dangerous to the internal security of the U.S.A. Than the Viet Cong could ever hope to be. The fight is here in the barrio and in the campos, and this fight is worth dying for, and no other will do for our Chicano youth.

In the Korean conflict, I lost my friend; more than a friend, a true carnal – Enrique (Rica) Salcido. I cannot adjust my mind to accept such unnecessary loss – off from basic training and into death, and why? As in the case of thousands like Salcido, not one more door opens for bettering ourselves. 

It is a damn shame that to get the few points for a civil service job in the post office, a dozen Chicanos have to die, so that the thirteenth can return to get it. 

For long, the Chicanos have viewed the Army, or services in general, as a possible route to escape the misery of the barrio, but new doors are being created by the movement in which such a high price does not continue to be paid for our economic and educational freedom.

It is ironic that the early birth of the Movement was in the minds of returnees from World War II. They foresaw a brighter future for Chicanos now that the battle had been won, and now, Vietnam. Peace and prosperity promised to Chicanos continues to hang like a carrot to make us fight in the “punta” of a rifle. “Hell no, we won't go!” goes double for Chicanos.

Other parts of this series:

Part IV Goals 
from The Chicano Movement: Some Not Too Objective Observations by Abelardo B. Delgado, (Denver: Colorado Migrant Council, 1971), prepared by the Colorado Migrant Council. Published with permission from the Delgado Family. Special thanks for Dolores Delgado. (c) Abelardo Delgado 1971, all right reserved. This may not be republished with out the permission of the Delgado estate.

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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Victor Martinez Walks On

Victor Martinez
 - 2011

Parrot in the Oven Author Walks On
Friends and Family Mourn the loss of Award-Winning Writer

Just saw from several people on Facebook that Chicano poet/author Victor Martinez passed away. He was/is the author of Parrot in the Oven which was awarded the 1996 National Book Award for Young People's Literature. 

Francisco X. Alarcon has written a write up on Facebook. READ IT NOW.

His Harper Collins bio reads: "Victor Martinez was born and raised in Fresno, California, the fourth in a family of twelve children. He attended California State University at Fresno and Stanford University, and has worked as a field laborer, welder, truck driver, firefighter, teacher, and office clerk. His poems, short stories, and essays have appeared in journals and anthologies. Mr. Martinez was awarded the 1996 National Book Award for Young People's Literature for Parrot in the Oven, his first novel. He now makes his home in San Francisco, California."

Also check out this PBS New Hour Interview with Martinez.

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

New Chicano(a) Focused Non-Fiction in Feb. 2011

 New Chicano Focused Non-Fiction in Feb. 2011

Tejanos in Gray: Civil War Letters of Captains Joseph Rafael de la Garza and Manuel Yturri
(Fronteras Series, sponsored by Texas A and M International University) - Hardcover
TAMU Press February 27, 2011
ISBN-10: 160344243X ISBN-13: 978-1603442435
Dr. Jerry Thompson Ph.D. (Editor), José Roberto Juárez Ph.D. (Translator)

Mexican Texans, fighting for the Confederate cause, in their own words . . .  The Civil War is often conceived in simplistic, black and white terms: whites from the North and South fighting over states’ rights, usually centered on the issue of black slavery. But, as Jerry Thompson shows in Tejanos in Gray, motivations for allegiance to the South were often more complex than traditional interpretations have indicated.

Gathered for the first time in this book, the forty-one letters and letter fragments written by two Mexican Texans, Captains Manuel Yturri and Joseph Rafael de la Garza, reveal the intricate and intertwined relationships that characterized the lives of Texan citizens of Mexican descent in the years leading up to and including the Civil War. 

The experiences and impressions reflected in the letters of these two young members of the Tejano elite from San Antonio, related by marriage, provide fascinating glimpses of a Texas that had displaced many Mexican-descent families after the Revolution, yet could still inspire their loyalty to the Confederate flag. De la Garza, in fact, would go on to give his life for the Southern cause.

The letters, translated by José Roberto Juárez and with meticulous annotation and commentary by Thompson, deepen and provide nuance to our understanding of the Civil War and its combatants, especially with regard to the Tejano experience. 

Historians, students, and general readers interested in the Civil War will appreciate Tejanos in Gray for its substantial contribution to borderlands studies, military history, and the often-overlooked interplay of region, ethnicity, and class in the Texas of the mid-nineteenth century.

Mexican American Baseball in Los Angeles
(Images of Baseball)
Paperback - Arcadia Publishing February 21, 2011
ISBN-10: 0738581801
ISBN-13: 978-0738581804
Francisco E. Balderrama (Author), Richard A. Santillan (Author)

Images of Baseball: Mexican American Baseball in Los Angeles celebrates the flourishing culture of the great pastime in East Los Angeles and other communities where a strong sense of Mexican identity and pride was fostered in a sporting atmosphere of both fierce athleticism and social celebration. 

From 1900, with the establishment of the Mexican immigrant community, to the rise of Fernandomania in the 1980s, baseball diamonds in greater Los Angeles were both proving grounds for youth as they entered their educations and careers, and the foundation for the talented Forty-Sixty Club, comprised of players of at least 40, and often over 60, years of age. 

These evocative photographs look back on the great Mexican American teams and players of the 20th century, including the famous Chorizeros--the proclaimed "Yankees of East L.A."

Mexican Americans in Wilmington
(Images of America Series) Paperback
Arcadia Publishing February 21, 2011
ISBN-10: 0738581747
ISBN-13: 978-0738581743
Olivia Cueva-Fernandez

Under Spanish, Mexican, and U.S. flags, the Los Angeles harbor area has developed many industries and businesses that survived on Mexican labor, supporting families of Mexican origin for more than a century.

Pioneering Mexican Americans have worked the railroads, fields, canneries, plants, refineries, waterfront, and family-owned businesses for generations, forming strong bonds and lifelong friendships.

Active in the military and sports, as well as involved in the church and community, Mexican Americans have overcome poverty, hardships, and discrimination, retained cultural values and customs, intermarried and assimilated with other cultures, and become the largest ethnic group in Wilmington.

Many of the early families still have relatives that live and work in Wilmington, with sons and daughters achieving successful careers in various realms.

Through education, hard work, and determination, Wilmington's Mexican Americans have contributed extensively to the harbor's vibrant American way of life.

Marching Students: Chicana and Chicano Activism in Education, 1968 to the Present  
Paperback - University of Nevada Press February 1, 2011
ISBN-10: 087417841X
ISBN-13: 978-0874178418
Margarita Berta-Avila (Author), Anita Tijerina Revilla (Editor), Julie Lopez Figueroa (Editor)

In 1968 over 10,000 Chicana/o high school students in East Los Angeles walked out of their schools in the first major protest against racism and educational inequality staged by Mexican Americans in the United States. 

They ignited the Mexican-American civil rights movement, which opened the doors to higher education and equal opportunity in employment for Mexican Americans and other Latinos previously excluded. 

Marching Students is a collaborative effort by Chicana/o scholars in several fields to place the 1968 walkouts and Chicana and Chicano Civil Rights Movement in historical context, highlighting the contribution of Chicana/o educators, students, and community activists to minority education. 

El Paso and The Mexican Revolution
Arcadia Publishing ISBN: 9780738584652
On Sale Date: 11/08/2010
Patricia Haesly Worthington

The Mexican Revolution took place along the entire length of the border between the United States and Mexico. Most of the intense battles and revolutionary intrigue, however, were concentrated in the border region of El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juárez, Mexico. For 20 years, the U.S. and Mexico border communities dealt with revolution, beginning before the 1909 Taft-Díaz visit and ending with the Escobar Revolution of 1929. In between were battles, assassinations, invasions, and attempts at diplomacy. El Paso was center stage for many of these events. Newspapers and media from all over the country flocked to the border and produced numerous stories, photographs, and colorful renditions of the Mexican Revolution. The facts and myths have been kept alive over the last 100 years, and the revolution remains an important topic of discussion today.

Early Maricopa County: 1871-1920
Jeremy Rowe
Arcadia Publishing ISBN: 9780738574165
On Sale Date: 01/24/2011

In 1863, the first mining town, Wickenburg, was established in what would become Maricopa County, when it was created from parts of Pima, Yuma, Mohave, and Yavapai counties on February 12, 1871. 

Spanish Franciscan missionary Francisco Garces claimed the name "Maricopa" came from the Pima word for the Pipatsje, a Yuman tribe from the Gulf of California that migrated to Arizona's central valley long ago. 

Ten years after Maricopa County was established, Jack Swillings's original settlement had begun its evolution into the ever-expanding city of Phoenix. By the turn of the 20th century, Maricopa County was no longer just a dusty settlement for a few hundred sturdy souls. 

Its rich agricultural districts had grown in scope and breadth, since its irrigation systems were fed by the Salt and Verde Rivers impounded in Roosevelt, Apache, and Canyon Lakes. Phoenix led the explosive growth of Maricopa County and Arizona, and by 1920 had become a dynamic, vibrant state capital. Today Maricopa County is the state's major economic engine and home to the fifth largest city in America.

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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Writing-Book News and Chicano Writer What's Up

Chicana Writers News


Corral Wins Yale Series for Younger Poets

Eduardo Corral won the Yale Series for Younger Poets. This is a first book award and the "oldest annual literary award in the United States." I seem to remember Corral having his first book on Monotombo Press, but looking through my stacks it was only an announcement of a book never came to, but hey, worth the wait for this prestigious prize. Check out Corral's blog.

J. Michael Martinez, Valarie Martinez, and Naomi Ayala to read in D.C.

J. Michael Martinez and Valerie Martinez will be in D.C. reading with Naomi Ayala at the Folger Shakespeare Library, Feb. 28. Click HERE for more info. 

A native of Puerto Rico, Naomi Ayala is the author of two books of poetry Wild Animals on the Moon, selected by the New York City Public Library as a Best Book for the Teen Age, and This Side of Early. Ms. Ayala lives in Washington, DC where, until recently, she served as the Executive Director of 826DC. 

Distinguishing herself as a poet who writes in both Spanish and English, Ms. Ayala’s most recent work appears in Al Pie de la Casa Blanca: Poetas Hispanos de Washington, DC. Ms. Ayala teaches at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda, MD and at the Joiner Center for the Study of War and Social Consequences at UMASS-Boston. She is the recipient of numerous awards for her work. Her third book of poems is scheduled for release by Bilingual Review Press.

J. Michael Martinez is a recipient of the 2006 Five Fingers Review Poetry Prize, and he has received residencies from the Ragdale Foundation, Canto Mundo, and the Vermont Studio Center. His first collection Heredities was selected by Juan Felipe Herrera for the Academy of American Poets' Walt Whitman Award.

Valerie Martínez’s first book of poetry, Absence, Luminescent, won the Larry Levis Prize and a Greenwall Grant from the Academy of American Poets. Her other books include World to World and a book-length poem, Each and Her. She was the Poet Laureate for the City of Santa Fe from March 2008 to March 2010.

Carlos Francisco Jackson Exhibit

A small blurp on the Illinois Times on Chicano artist/writer Carlos Francisco Jackson and his upcoming show. Mark your calendars for Feb. 17 from 5:30-6:30 p.m. at Brookens Auditorium to hear Jackson talk, sponsored by the ECCE Speaker Lecture Series. A reception follows from 6:30-8 p.m. in the arts gallery. Both events are free and open to the public.

Mi America/My America
Through March 23
Monday-Thursday 11am-6pm
UIS Visual Arts Gallery, HSB 201

For more info, click HERE.

Culture Clash new play to Open in La Joya

The La Joya Playhouse in San Diego will host Culture Clash's next play: "American Night: The Ballad of Juan Jose". The Chicano theatrical trio of Richard Montoya, Ric Salinas and Herbert Siguenza returns to San Diego with this new comedy (commissioned last year at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival) about a Hispanic man who is swept into pivotal moments of American history while studying for his U.S. citizenship exam. It will be directed by Jo Bonney ("The Seven," "Adoration of the Old Woman"). Dates are not set yet. MORE INFO.

Poetic Journey: Juan Felipe Herrera

Highlander Features of the University of California, Riverside did a feature on Juan Felipe Herrera ("A Poetic Journey of Self Discovery: Professor Juan Felipe Herrera"): "He embraced the culture around him, and yet, was confined in by insecurities as a college student. "I'd be trembling so much, I didn't want to read. I didn't want to show people how afraid I am," he admits. But as he developed a sense of freedom within the realm of writing poetry and speeches, he began to shout and express his feelings.  He began to read, write and publish, and discovered a group of friends that shared a similar love of poetry." READ MORE.

Marisa Trevino wins Latina Blogger of the Year 

Marisa Trevino has received the Groundbreaking Latina Blogger of the Year from CATALINA Magazine. "Marisa Trevino describes herself as a "dedicated Chicana, playwright, and citizen." The syndicated journalist and local public radio commentator's blog stays up to date with the latest information on news, entertainment, arts, family matters, education trends, and other social justice issues affecting the Hispanic community." READ MORE.

Anthology of Andrés Montoya Poetry and Interview with Daniel Chacon

The Letras Latinas Blog states that Daniel Chacon is editing a collection of poetry by the late Andrés Montoya. READ MORE. Also check out Letras Latinas Blog interview with Chacon. 

Letras Latinas/Red Hen Press Poetry Prize

On the topic of Letras Latinas, they have recently announced the Letras Latinas/Red Hen Press Poetry Prize. It will support the publication of a second or third full-length collection of poems by a Latino or Latina poet.

The winning poet will receive $1000, a contract from Red Hen Press and, upon publication of the winning book, an invitation to give a reading in Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, and Washington, D.C. READ MORE ABOUT THIS COMPETITION.

Lost Novel by Bolaño

"Lost Roberto Bolaño novel to be serialised this spring" says The Guardian. "A newly uncovered novel by the late Chilean writer Roberto Bolaño will get its first English language publication this year in the literary quarterly the Paris Review."

New Book from Lorna Dee Cervantes out in Fall
Lorna Dee Cervantes posted on her Facebook wall that her book CIENTO: 100 100-Word Love Poems! (Wing Press) She states that is was due on Valentines Day, but has "been delayed until September. Order an advance copy and help the press. Order Lorna Dee special handmade, handsewn collector's edition for your Valentine, CIENTO POR CIEN. 100 4 $100, and help the poet!

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Book and Literature News
To Publish a Women

I caught this on Sheryl Luna's blog, a statistical look at publishing of women by major magazines. I was put together by VIDA Women in Literary Arts. Women are under-represented in the big magazines. Read The Count 2010.

Editing where art Thou?

Has the art of editing been lost, asks Alex Clark in The Guardian. Check out: "The lost art of editing.": " "it's not only the authors who will and should wince on reading these words. The editors . . . are responsible as well, for being too indolent, timid or unobservant, if the reviewers are right. But will pain spur them to remember that editors are supposed to edit?" READ MORE.

Evil's Cross Examination: Lord of the Rings from Evil's Viewpoint

Lord of the Rings told from the Dark Lord Sauron's point of view. A Russian novelist has penned The Lastringbearer giving Mordor (you should hear wind and and evil voice now) point of view. Fearing copyright infringement, it has not come out in the west, but see this Salon.com article for a link to a free download: "Announcing the 'Which OC Pioneers Were KKK Members?' Series!."

No "Alone Time" in the Digital Age

Is Facebook ruining your "alone time"? Check out this book review on Salon.com: "Alone Together": Is technology ruining our ability to be alone?"

Closing the Border

Woe time for Border Books. Borders announced that is will close 600 stores and has filed for bankruptcy. READ MORE (BBC). Also see a related National Public Radio story "Borders in Bankruptcy: is Your Booksstore Next."

Coffee House Press Spot Light

Check out this interview by Anis Shivani with Coffee House Press, a small press that has published a few Chicanos throughout the years (Huntington Post). READ NOW.

Public Library: To Close or Not to Close

Closing or cutting back on your public libraries. Think again! Check out this story on The Guardian: "Library protests cause some councils to rethink cuts."

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El Paso Writers Update for Week of Feb. 14

El Paso Writer Update for 
Week of Feb. 14

Pre-C.M. Mayo

Check out the Madame Mayo blog for a "pre-C.M. Mayo" look at, well, C.M. Mayo. READ NOW. She will give a workshop at the San Miguel de Allende Writers Conference on Feb. 20. READ MORE.

Reading of "Zeta" play, written my Morton and Stavans

Don't miss it.   A public reading of the Carlos Morton (University of California, Santa Barbara) and Ilan Stavan's one-man play ZETA in Massachusetts (I think?):

Next: Zeta A one-man- play by Ilan Stavans and Carlos Morton
directed by Dan Lombardo
with Luis Negron
February 13 - 19, 2011 Public Reading: Feb. 19, Julie Harris Stage, 8:00 pm

Place: a San Francisco hospital. Time: 1974. Oscar Acosta, an obese, balding, brown-skinned, paranoid 39-year-old Mexican-American anti-establishment lawyer, sick with ulcers, talks to the ghosts of his past (his parents, his two wives, his son Marco, journalist Ruben Salazar, his one-time-friend and current nemesis friend Hunter S. Thompson) as he prepares to escape the hospital, travel to Mazatlan, Mexico, and take his final journey into immortality. 

For more info, click HERE

O Say Can You Sing?

Check out El Paso-native Lorenzo Candelaria (University of Texas, Austin) spin on the national anthem and Christina Aguilera's misfortune singing it: "Aguilera's opening anthem on one of America's biggest feast days was roundly criticized because it fell short of a proper offering." READ MORE.

Gilb and Granados on program pilot

Dagoberto Gilb and Christine Granados are quoted in a Victoria Advocate article regarding a pilot program at the University of Houston-Victoria. READ MORE

I Ain't Got No Money Honey: Texas and Education Financing with Raymundo Paredes

As Texas falls deeper and deeper into the financial black hole, Raymund Paredes pleads with Texas legislatures to save financial aid in Texas (Dallas Morning News). READ MORE. Also see "Higher ed chief seeks deal" (San Antonio Express-News). Also, see "Paredes to legislators: Cut colleges not financial aid" (Dallas Morning News) and "El Paso higher ed weighs budget cut impacts" (El Paso Times) and "Texas has  $10,000 degree, but for how long" (Texas Tribune).

Ruben Salazar Files Soon to be Opened

After more than 6 months of waiting the report on the Los Angeles County Sheriff's files on slain Chicano journalist Ruben Salazar may be out soon. See this Los Angeles Times story, "Review of 1970 Ruben Salazar slaying to contain 'interesting new information'." Also see a related National Public Radio story "Long Secret, File on Salazar Death May be Released."

A Poetry Out Loud Winner wins with Chicano Poem

A Missouri student won the Poetry Out Loud contest reading poetry and she read two poems, one by Emily Dickenson an "To the Desert" by our own Benjamin Alire Saenz. More than 300,000 students across the country competed in Poetry Out Loud last year. READ MORE.

Blowout: Mario T. Garcia and Sal Castro

Check out this La Prensa San Diego article on Mario T. Garcia's (University of California, Santa Barbara) new book Blowout! Sal Castro and the Chicano Struggle for Educational Justice (The University of North Carolina Press, 2011). The book is co-authored with Sal Castro. READ MORE. Garcia will be in El Paso in early March and he will present his book at UT El Paso.

Octavio Solis at New Play Summit

Octavio Solis is mentioned in a Huffington Post bit by Tracy Shaffer regarding the Colorado New Play Summit. CHECK IT OUT. Westworld says, "In Cecilia Marie, Octavio Solis takes the plot of his Lydia -- which premiered at the Denver Center in 2008 -- several steps further, exploring the future life of the brain-damaged protagonist's dancer brother in a text that's passionate, poetic and surreal." READ MORE.

Sexual Outlaw?

Did you know the band Sexual Outlaws got it's same from John Rechy's book of the same name. Read About It.

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Friday, February 11, 2011

New Fiction Titles in Feb. 2011: New Chicano and Latino Books

New Chicano and Latino Fiction 
for Feb. 2011


(WEST WORD FICTION) Paperback University of Nevada Press 
February 1, 2011
ISBN-10: 087417838X ISBN-13: 978-0874178388
Richard Yañez 

Raul Luis "Ruly" Cruz is a young Mexican American who lives in El Paso, just across the Rio Grande from Mexico, home of his ancestors and some of his current relatives.

As he grows from awkward adolescent to manhood, he negotiates the precarious borders of family, tradition, and identity trying to find his own place in the Chicano community and in the larger world.

This is an engaging and moving story of growing up in a borderland that is not only geographical but cultural and psychological as well.

(Camino Del Sol Series) Paperback
University of Arizona Press February 7, 2011
ISBN-10: 0816528829 ISBN-13: 978-0816528820
Xochiquetzal Candelaria
Using both lyrical and narrative forms, these concise verses explore a family history set against the larger backdrop of Mexican history, immigration, and landscapes of the Southwest. The poet's delicate touch lends these poems an organic quality that allows her to address both the personal and the political with equal grace. Straightforward without being simplistic or reductive, these poems manage to be intimate without seeming self-important.
This distinctive collection ranges from the frighteningly whimsical image of Cortés dancing gleefully around a cannon to the haunting and poignant discovery of a dead refugee boy seemingly buried within the poet herself. The blending of styles works to blur the lines between subjects, creating a textured narrative full of both imagination and nuance.

Ultimately, Empire situates individual experience in the wider social context, highlighting the power of poetry as song, performance, testimony, and witness. Addressing themes such as war, family, poverty, gender, race, and migration, Candelaria gives us a dialogue between historical and personal narratives, as well as discreet "conversations" between content and form.

Paperback University of Notre Dame Press; 1st Edition edition February 1, 2011
ISBN-10: 0268029792 ISBN-13: 978-0268029791
Ernesto Galarza (Author), Ilan Stavans (Introduction)

Barrio Boy is the remarkable story of one boy's journey from a Mexican village so small its main street didn't have a name, to the barrio of Sacramento, California, bustling and thriving in the early decades of the twentieth century.

With vivid imagery and a rare gift for re-creating a child's sense of time and place, Ernesto Galarza gives an account of the early experiences of his extraordinary life--from revolution in Mexico to segregation in the United States--that will continue to delight readers for generations to come.

"Barrio Boy is one of the classic early Chicano Renaissance texts giving us the early experiences of the labor organizer and scholar Ernesto Galarza. Galarza had been one of the few scholars focusing on Chicano laborers before the Chicano Movement. He published two other books Merchants of Labor and Spiders in the House and Workers in the Field.” – Raymundo Eli Rojas, Pluma Fronteriza

Perfect Paperback - Tate Publishing February 8, 2011
ISBN-10: 1617394254 ISBN-13: 978-1617394256
Jerry P. Martinez

Luciano Herrera never backed away from a fight. He was a tough man from a tough placenorthern New Mexico. When the U.S. Army entered New Mexico in 1846, Luciano knew that changes were coming. 

The rules of the old frontier no longer applied. Americano law now governed New Mexico. When Luciano caught his wife in bed with another man, he faced a difficult decision. Before the U.S. conquest, Luciano would have killed the other man without hesitation. 
But faced with the possibility of doing time in an American prison, Luciano spared the man's life, setting off a series of events that would bring great misfortune to Luciano and his family. For the rest of his life, Luciano was haunted by his decision and struggled to maintain his sense of honor in a changing world. 

In Timely Conquest, Jerry Martinez tells the story of his great-grandfathers, Luciano Herrera and Jesus Maria Martin, as they adapt to life in New Mexico under U.S. control. They trade and travel with Americans and Indians, they fight in the Civil War, and they experience love and loss. 

Timely Conquest offers a fascinating snapshot of a time of change for the American West and for the people who called it home.

University of New Mexico Press
(February 15, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0826328199 ISBN-13: 978-0826328199
Translated by Ursula K. Le Guin

The first Nobel Prize in Literature awarded to a Latin American writer went to the Chilean poet Gabriela Mistral. The breadth and depth of Nobel laureate Gabriela Mistral's poetry is passionately translated to English by Le Guin in this landmark bilingual edition.

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