"I cannot sleep unless I am surrounded by books."

Borges

Saturday, May 14, 2005

Burro Genius by Victor Villasenor


Victor Villasenor is an incredible, wonderful writer. He is all the more so when you read this biography and learn of the immense challenges he faced from the educational system, his extreme dyslexia and from bigotry.

Mr. Villasenor writes with pathos about growing up during a time when Mexicans were thought of as dirty, lazy and sub-standard. Forced to not speak Spanish in school, he was taught to be ashamed of his parents, ashamed of being Mexican. The teachers were horrible and abusive. I can’t believe the child that was so abused and mistreated grew up to be such an astounding writer.

As I read this book, I became more and more aware of how important it is as a Mexican-American or, as I refer to myself as a Mexica, to keep our culture, to speak our Spanish, to teach our children who they are and where they come from. So much was taken from us in ways such as you will read in this book that we can’t let any more be taken. We have to make a stand and start taking back what belongs to us, starting with our culture.

This astounding book will make you laugh, cry and incredibly angry. It should be required reading in any school and certainly for anyone with Mexican heritage

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