E 379S • Senior Seminar
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
Writers Rudolfo Anaya, Rolando Hinojosa-Smith, Tomas Rivera, Gary Soto, and especially Sandra Cisneros helped to usher Mexican American literature into the American cultural mainstream. While their works introduced readers to the social politics of a Chicana/o cultural identity, they also established the importance of gender and class at the center of the Chicana/o literary tradition. This course will examine gender and class in contemporary Mexican American literature within the last ten years. In the first part of the semester, we will establish a critical foundation for our readings and discussions with critical essays, for example, from the work of Alfred Molina, Robyn Moreno, and Michelle Herrera Mulligan. We will then focus our attention on the construction of gender and class in these texts, specifically machismo, the macha, angels, whores, brujas, tranvestis, poverty, exploitation, upward mobility, the emergence of a Mexican American middle class, and consumer and commodity culture.
Two 3-4-page papers 30%
One 8-10-page seminar paper 40%
One 5-7-page proposal and annotated bibliography and oral presentation 30%
Casaras, Oscar, Brownsville
López, Lorraine, Soy la Avon Lady and Other Stories
Martinez, Nina Marie, ¡Caramba!
Troncoso, Sergio, The Last Tortilla & Other Stories
Urrea, Luis Alberto, Six Kinds of Sky
Viramontes, Helena Maria, The Moths and Other Stories
Mirande, Alfredo, Hombres y Machos: Masculinity and Latino Culture
Moreno, Robyn and Michelle Herrera Mulligan, eds., Borderline Personalities: A New Generation of Latinas Dish on Sex, Sass, & Cultural Shifting