Barrio Boy: 40th Anniversary Edition / Edition 40

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Overview

About the Book  

Since it was first published in 1971, Galarza's classic work has been assigned in high school and undergraduate classrooms across the country, profoundly affecting thousands of students who read this true story of acculturation into American life.

To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the publication of Barrio Boy, the University of Notre Dame Press is proud to reissue this best-selling book with a new text design and cover, as well an introduction--by Ilan Stavans, the distinguished cultural critic and editor of the Norton Anthology of Latino Literature--which places Ernesto Galarza and Barrio Boy in historical context.

About the Author

Ernesto Galarza (1905-1984) was a labor organizer, historian, professor, and community activist. When he was eight, he migrated from Jalcocotan, Nayarit, Mexico, to Sacramento, California, where he worked as a farm laborer. He received a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University. In addition to Barrio Boy, he is the author of a number of books, including Strangers in Our Fields (1956), Merchants of Labor (1964), and Spiders in the House and Workers in the Fields (1970). In 1979, Dr. Galarza was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature.

"Unlike people who are born in hospitals, in an ambulance, or in a taxicab I showed up in an adobe cottage with a thatched roof that stood at one end of the only street of Jalcocotan, which everybody called Jalco for short. Like many other small villages in the wild, majestic mountains of the Sierra Madre de Nayarit, my pueblo was a hideaway. Even though you lived there, arriving in Jalco was always a surprise." --from Chapter 1

Reviews of the original edition:

". . . An illuminating record of the forebodings of ordinary rural Mexicans at the beginning of the revolution." -- The New York Review of Books

"With its suspense, humor, and occasional sadness, Barrio Boy is splendid reading." -- American Anthropologist

"Galarza's proud and moving book is a testament to who he is, where he came from, and to the country which received him and in which he has devoted his life fighting for both la justicia and justice." -- Social Education Journal 

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.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“In 1971, at the age of sixty-six, the labour activist, educator and scholar Ernesto Galarza (1905-1984) published Barrio Boy, a memoir of the long migration of his family from a small village in the Sierra Madre to California. Barrio Boy immediately became a classic of Chicano literature, and on its fortieth anniversary has now been published in a new edition with an introduction by the critic, biographer and short-story writer Ilan Stavans.” —Times Literary Supplement 

“Galarza’s book is about growing up—first in Mexico, then in America. To this reader, it is on the same artistic level as Black Boy or Call It Sleep or even Huckleberry Finn. . . . As with Wright and Roth and Twain, we are given a near-perfect tale of rising from absolute poverty to middle-class security, but instead of a woeful recounting, it is filled with the joy of discovery: from living in the lively muddy streets of a small village in Nayarit to surviving, wide-eyed, in the lively and noisy barrios of Sacramento.” —RALPH: The Review of Arts, Literature, Philosophy and the Humanities 

“The 40th anniversary edition of Galarza’s book, now a standard text in high school and college classrooms, has become so popular that it has . . . achieved the dubious honor of being the subject of study guides and essays available for purchase online.” —Occidental College

Library Journal - BookSmack!
This book started life as a handful of stories Galarza related to family members about his boyhood in a tiny Mexican village and his immigration to California in the early 20th century (he was born in 1905). Family members encouraged him to write them down since he had already published some academic material. It proved a difficult but rewarding task, as the 1971 book was a success. This 40th-anniversary edition includes the original text as well as an introduction by scholar Ilan Stavans placing the book in its historical context, plus a helpful glossary of the Spanish vocabulary used frequently throughout. If your existing copy is wearing out, replace it with this edition. — "Classic Returns," Booksmack! 2/3/11
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780268029791
  • Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press
  • Publication date: 2/1/2011
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Edition number: 40
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 341,919
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Ernesto Galarza (1905–1984) was a labor organizer, historian, professor, and community activist. When he was eight, he migrated from Jalcocotán, Nayarit, Mexico, to Sacramento, California, where he worked as a farm laborer. He received a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University. In addition to Barrio Boy, he is the author of a number of books, including Strangers in Our Fields (1956), Merchants of Labor (1964), and Spiders in the House and Workers in the Fields (1970). In 1979, Dr. Galarza was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature.

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Table of Contents


Table of Contents

Introduction to the 40th Anniversary Edition by Ilan Stavans

PART ONE: In a Mountain Village

PART TWO: Peregrinations

PART THREE: North From Mexico

PART FOUR: Life in the Lower Part of Town

PART FIVE: On the Edge of the Barrio

Glossary 

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 8, 2013

    Highly Highly Recommended!

    This memoir begins in the villages of Mexico and moves northward until the mother and son and two uncles finally settle in sacramento. It is a rich story of intelligent people who continually try to evade strife and make their way in the world, wherever this takes them. Persistence and hard work and community serve to make this an inspiring read. It was recommended to me by a student who felt it was his story. Anyone who seeks to understand our Mexican neighbors should read it.

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