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Daughters of the Fifth Sun: A Collection of Latina Fiction and Poetry

Overview

According to the sacred beliefs of the Aztec, Maya, Quiche, and other peoples of Latin America, the universe has known five ages, the present being Quinto Sol, or Fifth Sun. "In this age," asked Cuahtencoztli, an ancient Aztec philosopher, "how best is truth spoken?" He was answered by Prince Tecayehuatzin, who said, "Only flower-and-song -- floricanto -- can express truth." Daughters of the Fifth Sun is a floricanto offering: of homes and heritage, of pride and hardship, of the mundane and the magical. From ...
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Overview

According to the sacred beliefs of the Aztec, Maya, Quiche, and other peoples of Latin America, the universe has known five ages, the present being Quinto Sol, or Fifth Sun. "In this age," asked Cuahtencoztli, an ancient Aztec philosopher, "how best is truth spoken?" He was answered by Prince Tecayehuatzin, who said, "Only flower-and-song -- floricanto -- can express truth." Daughters of the Fifth Sun is a floricanto offering: of homes and heritage, of pride and hardship, of the mundane and the magical. From national award-winners to emerging talents, the contributors to this volume represent the power and elegance of a community of writers that has produced some of the most vibrant literary work of recent years.

This vibrant, definitive anthology of short fiction and poetry displays the breadth and achievement of celebrated Latina writers while introducing the next generation of voices. Contributors include Sandra Cisneros, Ana Castillo, Julia Alvarez, and many others.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Threaded throughout this tantalizing but uneven collection of contemporary Latina writings is the theme of straddling two worlds-those of English- and Spanish-speaking cultures. The authors, though mostly American-born, have Cuban, Puerto Rican, Mexican or Native American backgrounds. In 17 short stories and nearly as many poems, this balancing act is manifest both in the subject matter, drawn primarily from family roots and relationships, and in the fact that most of the work was written in English, although often richly interwoven with Spanish phrases. Notable short stories include ``The Kiss,'' by Julia Alvarez (How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents), a deftly told tale of a woman's rebellion against her elderly, iron-fisted father, and the hypnotic, elliptical ``Eyes of Zapata,'' by Sandra Cisneros (The House on Mango Street), which recounts a family's experience of war in Mexico. The poems, all in free verse, tend toward the imagistic, surreal lyrics of much Latin American poetry. In Miriam Bornstein's ``On Becoming Round,'' the speaker supposes that ``Neruda knew nothing about pots and pans/ and putting words in little hands.'' Variety is both this collection's strength and weakness; too many of the selections by lesser-known writers have a disappointingly unfinished quality, making fresh voices like those of Cherre Moraga, Ana Castillo and Teresinka Pereira stand out all the more. (Sept.)
Library Journal
The 17 short stories and numerous poems in this anthology reflect the dualities of contemporary Latino culture and its conflicts of languages, roots, families, and communities. The authors reflect the range of that culture, from Chicana to Dominican American, from Cuban American to other Latin American. The well-known and frequently anthologized Latina writers such as Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvaraz, and Marjorie Agnosn are included, as are refreshing new voices, such as Denise Chavez, Miriam Bernstein, and Maya Islas. Judith Ortiz Cofer's "Nada" and Carmen Tafolla's "Chencho's Cow" are magical. Most of the works were originally written in English, but a few are translated from Spanish. The brief poems are all in free verse. Like any anthology, this is somewhat uneven but still worth adding to comprehensive Latino and American women's collections.-Mary Margaret Benson, Linfield Coll. Lib., McMinnville, Ore.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780930324896
  • Publisher: Wings Press TX
  • Publication date: 9/1/1995
  • Pages: 284
  • Product dimensions: 5.28 (w) x 7.98 (h) x 0.81 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword
Introduction 1
Notes 19
A Note on Italics 24
The Wedding 27
Uncoiling 40
On Becoming Round 42
Nada 44
(There Has to Be) Something More Than Everything 58
Night Vigil 62
The House of Quilts 67
Uncle Teo's Shorthand Cookbook 82
Holy Relics 90
Tia Maria 98
Four, Free, and Illegal 103
Along My Paths 113
Ryan, Thanks for the Offer 115
The Kiss 117
Bananas 133
Sin Palabras 138
Dear World 144
Eyes of Zapata 147
He 2 - 104: A True Planetary Nebula in the Making 179
The Glass Box 181
Adelina 197
Xochitl-Poem: For Paul Perry, Joseph Booker, and the Palo Alto Writers Guild 202
In the Other Half of Time 205
From Face 208
An Isle of Sorrow 229
I Have No Companions 230
Chencho's Cow 232
North from the River, South Inside 242
Loteria: La Rosa 248
The Singing Antelope 254
New Mexican Confession 259
Being Indian, a Candle, and So Many Dying Stars 263
Notes on the Contributors 270
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