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

Borges

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Goddess of the Americas by Ana Castillo



These essays by modern writers on the Virgen de Guadalupe are incredible. It is so wonderful to read these writers’ thoughts and feelings on the much beloved Guadalupe, patron saint of Mexico.

Since La Lupita is such a cultural icon both here in the US and in Mexico, I feel this is an important book. La Lupita permeates the consciousness of the Mexican and Chicano people. Ana Castillo gives the reader, not a glimpse but a full sense of that consciousness. This book is an education and a joy to have.

The poems and stories contained within are a glimpse into the personal journeys and thoughts of important writes and how Tonantzin or Guadalupe plays her magical role in their lives. You will find private and personal reflections by Ana Castillo and Sandra Cisneros (Caramelo); there is a wonderful essay by the very talented writer and documentarian of gang life in L.A., Luis Rodriguez; a brilliant essay by Richard Rodriguez (Hunger of Memory) as well as contributions by writers like my personal favorite Elena Poniatowska, Pat Mora, the beloved Octavio Paz and many others. You will read it over and over again.

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