English 190

Research Seminar: Chicanx Literature, Art and Performance


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
9 Spring 2021 Padilla, Genaro M.
TTh 5-6:30

Description

In this course, we will read the classics of Chicanx literature from the 1960s through the present.  We will open with Jose Antonio Villareall's Pocho (1959), a novel of both immigrant and first generation experience in the U.S. and then we will move to the major works of the Chicanx Movement of the 1960s and 1970s: y no se lo trago la tierra/and the earth did not devour him, Tomas Rivera (1971); Bless Me, Ultima, Rudolfo Anaya (1972); The Autobiography of a Brown Buffalo (1971) and Revolt of the Cockroach People (1972), Oscar Zeta Acosta.  We will also read the poetry of Lorna Dee Cervantes, Alma Villanueva, Evangelina Vigil,  Gary Soto, Alurista, raul salinas, and a few others.  We will incorporate the performative influence of Luis Valdez and El Teatro Campesino and survey the art of the period.   

The astonishing narrative and poetry of the 1980s largely turns on a critique of the male-centric Chicano Movement.  We must read Gloria Anzaldua's Borderlands/La Frontera: The New Mexiza  (1987) as well as Sandra Cisneros' House on Mango Street (1983) and some of the stories in Woman Hollering Creek (1991),  We may also read Ana Castillo's So Far from God (1993), which I think of as a rejoinder to Anaya's Bless me, Ultima. 

 In the final section of the course we will read Salvador Plascencia's fantasic The People of Paper (2005), survey the contemporary art, film and performance scene, as well as read the poetry of Javier Zamora, Emmy Perez and other contemporary writers whose work resonates with critique of the xenophobic U.S.-Mexico borderwall.  

You will write two short essays of 5-6 pages and a final essay of 10-12 pages.

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