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About Cherrie Moraga
Her most recently premiered play, 'New Fire: To Put Things Right Again,' which she also directed, opened at Brava Theater Center in San Francisco in 2012. A collaboration with visual artist, Celia Herrera Rodríguez, over three thousand people witnessed the work. In 2017, Moraga will premiere a new work, the award winning 'The Mathematics of Love," a theatrical conversation with her forthcoming literary memoir, THE NATIVE COUNTRY OF A HEART - A GEOGRAPHY OF DESIRE.
For nearly twenty years she has served as an Artist in Residence in the Department of Theater and Performance Studies and in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity at Stanford University. She has mentored a full generation of published writers and playwrights who credit Moraga as one of their most influential teachers. Cherríe Moraga is an activist writer, who sustains an engaged schedule of appearances on college campuses, conferences and community settings both nationally and internationally. She is also a founding member of La Red Xicana Indígena, an advocacy network of Xicanas working in education, the arts, spiritual practice, and indigenous women's rights.
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"This memoir's beauty is in its fierce intimacy." --Roy Hoffman, The New York Times Book Review
One of Literary Hub's Most Anticipated Books of 2019
From the celebrated editor of This Bridge Called My Back, Cherríe Moraga charts her own coming-of-age alongside her mother’s decline, and also tells the larger story of the Mexican American diaspora.
Native Country of the Heart: A Memoir is, at its core, a mother-daughter story. The mother, Elvira, was hired out as a child, along with her siblings, by their own father to pick cotton in California’s Imperial Valley. The daughter, Cherríe Moraga, is a brilliant, pioneering, queer Latina feminist. The story of these two women, and of their people, is woven together in an intimate memoir of critical reflection and deep personal revelation.
As a young woman, Elvira left California to work as a cigarette girl in glamorous late-1920s Tijuana, where an ambiguous relationship with a wealthy white man taught her life lessons about power, sex, and opportunity. As Moraga charts her mother’s journey—from impressionable young girl to battle-tested matriarch to, later on, an old woman suffering under the yoke of Alzheimer’s—she traces her own self-discovery of her gender-queer body and Lesbian identity, as well as her passion for activism and the history of her pueblo. As her mother’s memory fails, Moraga is driven to unearth forgotten remnants of a U.S. Mexican diaspora, its indigenous origins, and an American story of cultural loss.
Poetically wrought and filled with insight into intergenerational trauma, Native Country of the Heart is a reckoning with white American history and a piercing love letter from a fearless daughter to the mother she will never lose.
Thirty years after the publication of Anzaldúa and Moraga’s collection This Bridge Called My Back, a landmark of women-of-color feminism, Moraga’s literary and political praxis remains motivated by and intertwined with indigenous spirituality and her identity as Chicana lesbian. Yet aspects of her thinking have changed over time. A Xicana Codex of Changing Consciousness reveals key transformations in Moraga’s thought; the breadth, rigor, and philosophical depth of her work; her views on contemporary debates about citizenship, immigration, and gay marriage; and her deepening involvement in transnational feminist and indigenous activism. It is a major statement from one of our most important public intellectuals.
It has been decades since women of color first turned feminism upside down, exposing the feminist movement as exclusive, white, and unaware of the concerns and issues of women of color from around the globe. Since then, key social movements have risen, including Black Lives Matter, transgender rights, and the activism of young undocumented students. Social media has also changed how feminism reaches young women of color, generating connections in all corners of the country. And yet we remain a country divided by race and gender.
Now, a new generation of outspoken women of color offer a much-needed fresh dimension to the shape of feminism of the future. In Colonize This!, Daisy Hernandez and Bushra Rehman have collected a diverse, lively group of emerging writers who speak to the strength of community and the influence of color, to borders and divisions, and to the critical issues that need to be addressed to finally reach an era of racial freedom. With prescient and intimate writing, Colonize This! will reach the hearts and minds of readers who care about the experience of being a woman of color, and about establishing a culture that fosters freedom and agency for women of all races.