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Borderlands / La Frontera: The New Mestiza [Paperback]

Gloria Anzaldua , Norma Cantu , Aida Hurtado
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 12, 2012 1879960850 978-1879960855 4

Rooted in Gloria Anzaldúa's experience as a Chicana, a lesbian, an activist, and a writer, the essays and poems in this volume profoundly challenged, and continue to challenge, how we think about identity. Borderlands / La Frontera remaps our understanding of what a "border" is, presenting it not as a simple divide between here and there, us and them, but as a psychic, social, and cultural terrain that we inhabit, and that inhabits all of us.

This twenty-fifth anniversary edition features a new introduction by scholars Norma Cantú (University of Texas at San Antonio) and Aída Hurtado (University of California at Santa Cruz) as well as a revised critical bibliography.

Gloria Anzaldúa was a Chicana-tejana-lesbian-feminist poet, theorist, and fiction writer from south Texas. She was the editor of the critical anthology Making Face/Making Soul: Haciendo Caras (Aunt Lute Books, 1990), co-editor of This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color, and winner of the Before Columbus Foundation American Book Award. She taught creative writing, Chicano studies, and feminist studies at University of Texas, San Francisco State University, Vermont College of Norwich University, and University of California Santa Cruz. Anzaldúa passed away in 2004 and was honored around the world for shedding visionary light on the Chicana experience by receiving the National Association for Chicano Studies Scholar Award in 2005. Gloria was also posthumously awarded her doctoral degree in literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz. A number of scholarships and book awards, including the Anzaldúa Scholar Activist Award and the Gloria E. Anzaldúa Award for Independent Scholars, are awarded in her name every year.

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Borderlands / La Frontera: The New Mestiza + Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches (Crossing Press Feminist Series)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Aunt Lute Books; 4 edition (June 12, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1879960850
  • ISBN-13: 978-1879960855
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,877 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Gloria Anzaldúa (1942-2004) was a visionary writer whose work was recognized with many honors, including the Before Columbus Foundation American Book Award, a Lambda literary award, the National Endowment for the Arts Fiction Award, and the Bode-Pearson Prize for Outstanding Contributions to American Studies. Her book Borderlands/La frontera was selected as one of the 100 Best Books of the Century by Hungry Mind Review and the Utne Reader.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
52 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A complex tapestry exploring the many facets of "mestiza." September 22, 1998
By A Customer
Anzaldua weaves a richly complex tapestry which explores many facets of "mestiza" -- of being "caught between" a variety of binary oppositions. Of course, the complicated cultural issues of mestiza are thoroughly addressed in this brilliant, spell-binding book. Also, issues of language (as she weaves a variety of languages and linguistic modes of expression in her text), sexual identity (as a lesbian woman), shamanic consciousness (which she describes as her "waking dream" or the Coatlicue state," and later as the "shamanic state"), and more. The political implications of the book are powerful and engagingly complex. Yet at the same time, the personal and spiritual dimensions of the book are intensly satisfying. I find this book opening up doors of consciousness for me in my own spiritual and creative life. I strongly recommend reading this book at night before going to sleep. It is the kind of literature that expands in the dreaming consciousness.
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40 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Borderlands: A place where people can meet May 13, 1998
By A Customer
Borderlands/ La Frontera: the new Mestiza by Gloria Anzaldua is a wonderful piece of literature that refreshes and revitalizes the image of both Chicana/os and lesbians in a refreshing manner that exalts the power and possibilities immanent in both these marginalized perspectives. To reader who are skeptical of the legitimacy behind these positions beware, the immediacy of her prose and poetry may just convert you. But, regardless of ones knowledge of either contemporary issues in the more academic realm of queer theory and Chicano studies. The book is a wonderful achievement and insight into both of these very different and yet connected worlds, which are interlaced throughout the work. The English speaking reader may be wary of a book that does not cater to us as a reader-the book contains both passages in English and Spanish-however, even without access to the Spanish passages the book is a good way of getting to know a very different world than what most straight white middle class America is used to.

The Book is composed of seven essays, which is followed by selections of her poetry. However, do not make the mistake that these essays are only dry theoretical, or historical tales, to inform the reader about the plight of lesbians and Chicana/os, even though this is in some sense what these pieces are about. But Anzaldua's means of presenting of factual material is more akin to the poetry in the second half of the book than what we might normally expect. Her mixing of these genre's serves simultaneously to explore new frontiers both in an aesthetic sense and to truly give new life to her subject matter.
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25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Borderlands/La Frontera's Philosophical import May 2, 2006
Other reviewers have covered many of the qualities of the work, so I want to dwell on just one point - don't be fooled into thinking that this work is useful only as a personal study on Anzaldua's cultural/gender/queer theory.

Anzaldua is of high importance to any philosophy of the social; within her writing you can find the key insights of figures such as Derrida and Nietzsche, as they relate to personal identity crafted out of a fractured heritage. Her point is that we are ALL borderlanders given that the human condition involves being stretched across a chasm of self-alterity. Only through a full recognition of this can a critical inventory of the self be undertaken, which is a prerequisite to responsibility and genuine care of the self.
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27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Politics and Poetry September 17, 2003
The US- Mexican border es una herida abierta where the Third World grates against the first and bleeds. And before a scab forms it hemorrhages again, the lifeblood of two worlds merging to form a third country, a border culture.
This is a superb book. It approaches the themes relating to Chicano identity, and does so through poetry that extends from the included poems to the cultural-socioeconomic exploration that the body of the text undergoes.
In response to negative reviews posted: yes, Borderlands does confront emotional and cultural issues brought up in other Chicano/ border-culture texts. So what. Not enough books have been written about this, especially in this format that reacts to Chicano/ border-related issues in both an intellectual and emotional/ artistic mannor. The book does this with a beautiful poeticism that carries the essence of the hispanic literary tradition, bringing the culture of the written Spanish world into a primarily English-language book.
The Spanglish included is intended for an English-speaking audience, and is not in my opinion of the true transient nature which is inextricable from spoken Spanglish. So at times the language of the writing does feel a tad contrived; using Spanish as a highlighter for key words of certain themes as opposed to allowing it even-handed participation in the exploration of the author's thesis.
While somewhat obnoxious, this choice points to Anzaldua's desire to make this work accesible to people with little or no knowledge of Spanish. This can be seen as a beacon to draw in people who do not as yet see themselves as connected to the Chicano / Hispanic world.
If you like this book, check out the other collections put out by Aunt Lute (the book's original publisher), as well as writings by author/ playwright / peformer Cherrie Morraga, playwright Magdalia Cruz, poet/ artist Ivan Silen.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Replace Columbus Day with ANZALDUA DAY, yes?
Latina Lesbian Women's Studies Scholar, with Cherrie Moraga,
also from other works. We should rename Columbus Day
ANZALDUA Day! Why not?
Published 8 months ago by sarahwiser merrillee
5.0 out of 5 stars CLASS BOOK
Published 8 months ago by CELIAFAYE
5.0 out of 5 stars Never Expected
I never expected this book to look brand new! Even though it says Used-Good, it's actually brand new. Thank you!!
Published 10 months ago by alejandra fernandez
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice.
This is a very nice book in regards to understanding the differing issues of feminism within the Latin/Spanish culture etc.
Published 11 months ago by K.B.P.
5.0 out of 5 stars Required reading for everyone interested in race/gender/culture
I cannot recommend this work enough. It is very rare that you come across a book that will shake the very foundations of the way that you see the world. Read more
Published 16 months ago by El Osophilosophico
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Hispanic feminist text
I bought this to use in a class I taught, and even 30 years after its original publication date, it's still a relevant text on subaltern cultures. Read more
Published 17 months ago by Joey's Lil Girl
5.0 out of 5 stars Goodness
Many a novel and book have showed the intensity of their greatness. I cant not say how deeply great this is but I have now met my character requirement.
Published 18 months ago by JT
5.0 out of 5 stars Borderlands
I am a college student who purchased this text for my Latino literature class and I saved a few bucks by purchasing with Amazon. Read more
Published on March 15, 2011 by Mr. Nelson
2.0 out of 5 stars Oye, chica! Como hablas!
Rather than jump into the political debates of identity and race, I thought I'd mention some unusual aspects of Anzaldua's use of language. Read more
Published on February 4, 2010 by R. Borneman
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic
Not much can be said to some of the postings I see here--to those that suggest the third tier prose, those that call this work "racist," those that implore statements like "I hated... Read more
Published on June 28, 2007 by Juan F. Carrillo
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