Fire from the Andes: Short Fiction by Women from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru

Overview

This anthology provides an opportunity for English-speaking audiences to read previously untranslated fiction by women from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. Much of this work is inspired by an awareness of social injustice—particularly for women, indigenous groups, and other marginalized members of society and by a desire to transcend that injustice through personal revelation. Most of the stories focus on women's inner lives and their struggles to make sense of experience.

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Overview

This anthology provides an opportunity for English-speaking audiences to read previously untranslated fiction by women from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. Much of this work is inspired by an awareness of social injustice—particularly for women, indigenous groups, and other marginalized members of society and by a desire to transcend that injustice through personal revelation. Most of the stories focus on women's inner lives and their struggles to make sense of experience.

Like Mónica Bravo's heroine attempting to outwit death, or the mayor's wife, in a story by Alicia Yánez Cossí­o, surviving the news of her husband's infidelity, many of the protagonists are strong women, wise and shrewd. Perhaps the same could be said of the twenty-four authors who have drawn from their experience and imagination to create these compelling, often haunting, stories of life, liberty, love, and loss.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In the last 15 years, many English-language readers have been introduced to Latin American women's literature in translation, a field dominated by writers from Argentina and Chile. This anthology of short stories by 24 contemporary women writers now brings us women's writings from the Andean countries of Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru. The stories, for the most part dark, center on women's interior lives. In Ecuadoran Monica Bravo's "Wings for Dominga," an old woman outwits Death herself as she knits her memories into her shroud. Bolivian Marcella Gutierrez wryly retells the story of Adam and Eve and Lilith as a courtroom drama. Peruvian Pilar Dughi describes a bored, hopeless young woman who turns to terrorism. Catalina Lohmann, another Peruvian, uses a lighter tone to satirize dictatorships in her chronicle of a bus ride through the neighborhoods of Lima. Each story is preceded by a critical biographical introduction, and the book also includes an excellent bibliography of Spanish-language short story collections and of general bibliographies of the literature of these countries. Highly recommended for large public libraries and academic collections.Mary Margaret Benson, Linfield Coll. Lib., McMinnville, Ore.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826318251
  • Publisher: University of New Mexico Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/1998
  • Language: Spanish
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 6.11 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 0.57 (d)

Meet the Author

Susan Benner is an instructor of English and linguistics at Iowa State University and an Iowa Art Fellow in the Master of Fine Arts in translation program at the University of Iowa.

Kathy Leonard is professor of Spanish and Hispanic linguistics at Iowa State University, Ames, and was a Fulbright-Hays Fellow in Bolivia. She was awarded an NEH grant for 2003 to translate the Bolivian novel Bajo el oscuro sol by Yolanda Bedregal.

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Table of Contents

Foreword
Introduction
Acknowledgments
Bolivia
Virginia Ayllon Soria 3
Prayer to the Goddesses 4
Yolanda Bedregal 6
The Traveler 8
Erika Bruzonic 13
Inheritance 15
Giancarla de Quiroga 17
Of Anguish and Illusions 18
Elsa Dorado de Revilla Valenzuela 25
The Parrot 26
Marcela Gutierrez 31
The Feathered Serpent 33
Beatriz Kuramoto 39
The Agreement 40
Beatriz Loayza Millan 43
The Mirror 44
Blanca Elena Paz 48
The Light 49
Ecuador
Monica Bravo 53
Wings for Dominga 54
Aminta Buenano 59
The Strange Invasion That Rose from the Sea 61
Maria del Carmen Garces 68
The Blue Handkerchief 70
Nela Martinez 73
La Machorra 75
Monica Ortiz Salas 81
Mery Yagual (Secretary) 83
Fabiola Solis de King 92
Before It's Time 93
Eugenia Viteri 98
The Ring 100
Alicia Yanez Cossio 103
The Mayor's Wife 105
Peru
Gaby Cevasco 113
Between Clouds and Lizards 114
Pilar Dughi 116
The Days and Hours 118
Carmen Luz Gorriti 123
The Legacy (A Story from Huancayo) 125
Bethzabe Guevara 128
The Senorita Didn't Teach Me 130
Catalina Lohmann 136
The Red Line 137
Laura Riesco 142
The Twins of Olmedo Court 143
Gladys Rossel Huici 152
Light and Shadow 154
Authors' Bibliographies 159
Bibliography of Short Story Collections by or Including Women Authors from Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru 175
General Bibliographies for Boliva, Ecuador, and Peru 189
About the Editors 190
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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 31, 2000

    Highly readable with excellent stories, each very unique

    I was introduced to this anthology in a college course and found it very compelling. I was not familiar with any of the authors represented, and have since sought some of them out, especially Blanca Elena Paz, Giancarla de Quiroga, Monica Bravo, and Pilar Dughi. Although there are few happy endings in these stories, in fact, most are rather dark in nature, they realistically portray life and culture in Latin America, and can teach the reader a great deal about Ecuador, Bolivia, and Peru. I especially enjoyed the very short story by Blanca Elena Paz that gives the reader a glimpse into the terror felt by Argentine citizens during the years of dictatorship. Pilar Dughi, from Peru, writes of everyday citizens taking up arms in Lima and joining the ranks of subversives to overcome their ordinary status. Included in the book are very interesting biographies for each author, as well as a photograph and a bibliography for further reading. I highly recommend this book to anyone with an interest in Latin America. However, the stories are so well written and translated that they will interest just about anyone.

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