Entiendes?: Queer Readings, Hispanic Writings

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"¿Entiendes?" is literally translated as "Do you understand? Do you get it?" But those who do "get it" will also hear within this question a subtler meaning: "Are you queer? Are you one of us?" The issues of gay and lesbian identity represented by this question are explored for the first time in the context of Spanish and Hispanic literature in this groundbreaking anthology.
Combining intimate knowledge of Spanish-speaking cultures with contemporary queer theory, these essays address texts that share both a common language and a concern with lesbian, gay, and bisexual identities. Using a variety of approaches, the contributors tease the homoerotic messages out of a wide range of works, from chronicles of colonization in the Caribbean to recent Puerto Rican writing, from the work of Cervantes to that of the most outrageous contemporary Latina performance artists. This volume offers a methodology for examining work by authors and artists whose sexuality is not so much open as "an open secret," respecting, for example, the biographical privacy of writers like Gabriela Mistral while responding to the voices that speak in their writing. Contributing to an archeology of queer discourses, ¿Entiendes? also includes important studies of terminology and encoded homosexuality in Argentine literature and Caribbean journalism of the late nineteenth century.
Whether considering homosexual panic in the stories of Borges, performances by Latino AIDS activists in Los Angeles, queer lives in turn-of-the-century Havana and Buenos Aires, or the mapping of homosexual geographies of 1930s New York in Lorca’s "Ode to Walt Whitman," ¿Entiendes? is certain to stir interest at the crossroads of sexual and national identities while proving to be an invaluable resource.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"People working in gay and lesbian studies in Hispanic literatures or cultural studies will not be able to continue to work without this volume close at hand. ¿Entiendes? provides both impetus and standards for all subsequent work in the field."—Benigno Sánchez-Eppler, Brandeis University

"This is a groundbreaking collection of essays on gay and lesbian topics in Hispanic literatures—there is nothing that compares with it."—George Yúdice, Hunter College and The Graduate Center, City University of New York

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822316152
  • Publisher: Duke University Press Books
  • Publication date: 6/28/1995
  • Series: Series Q
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 448
  • Lexile: 1510L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.21 (w) x 9.29 (h) x 1.32 (d)

Meet the Author

Emilie L. Bergmann is Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of California, Berkeley and a coauthor of Women, Culture and Politics in Latin America.

Paul Julian Smith is Professor of Spanish and Portuguese at Cambridge University. He is the author of many books including, Desire Unlimited: The Cinema of Pedro Almodóvar and Laws of Desire: Questions of Homosexuality in Spanish Writing and Film, 1960–90.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Aldonza as Butch: Narrative and the Play of Gender in Don Quijote 17
The "Fecal Dialectic": Homosexual Panic and the Origin of Writing in Borges 29
The Argentine Dissemination of Homosexuality, 1890-1914 49
Julian del Casal and the Queers of Havana 92
Community at Its Limits: Orality, Law, Silence, and the Homosexual Body in Luis Rafael Sanchez's [actual symbol not reproducible] 115
Toward an Art of Transvestism: Colonialism and Homosexuality in Puerto Rican Literature 137
Fleshing Out Virgilio Pinera from the Cuban Closet 168
The Lesbian Body in Latina Cultural Production 181
The "Schoolteacher of America": Gender, Sexuality, and Nation in Gabriela Mistral 201
Disappearing Acts: Reading Lesbian in Teresa de la Parra 230
A Logic in Lorca's Ode to Walt Whitman 257
The Look that Kills: The "Unacceptable Beauty" of Alejandra Pizarnik's La condesa sangrienta 281
Lesbian Tantalizing in Carmen Lugo Filippi's "Milagros, Calle Mercurio" 306
Virtual Sexuality: Lesbianism, Loss, and Deliverance in Carme Riera's "Te deix, amor, la mar com a penyora" 317
Teatro Viva!: Latino Performance and the Politics of AIDS in Los Angeles 346
Nationalizing Sissies 370
Index 411
Contributors 427
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