“This timely book challenges the ideological and chronological binaries behind the canon set up by established U.S. Latino/a literary critics. It provokes and exhorts readers to rethink the dualities—resident versus immigrant, oppositional versus mainstream—that imply that Latino/a literature can only be resistant through the anti-colonial discourse of the 60s and 70s. By sharing with its readers their incisive textual analysis of New York based Latino/a Caribbean fiction, the authors challenge these ideological limitations and propose more nuanced and complex readings of these texts. The clear and incisive discussions about canon formation, ideologies and the market are unprecedented and very much needed in the context of globalization.”
— Frances Aparicio is Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Some of the books she has published include Listening to Salsa (1998),Tropicalizations: Transcultural Representations of Latinidad (1997) co-edited with Susana Chávez Silverman, Musical Migrations (2003) co-edited with Cándida Jáquez, andHibridismos Culturales (2005) co-edited with Alberto Sandoval Sánchez.
“The first book to look seriously at the process by which a panethnic US Latino/a literary canon has been constructed […] One of the greatest strengths of The Latino/a Canon is its sustained attention to the market—as constructive of certain modes of reception for these texts, as a force with which the authors themselves must engage, and as it is represented withinthe texts themselves […] As an overview of the field and of the fundamental paradigms that have informed much Latino/a literary scholarship, the introduction is, quite simply, indispensable; it would supply a valuable framework for any course on Latino/a literature […] The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature is an important contribution to Latino/a literary studies and will be of enormous value to anyone wishing to attend to the politics and process of canon formation.”
–Marta Caminero-Santangelo is Professor of English and founder of the Latino/a Studies program at the University of Kansas. She is author of On Latinidad: U.S. Latino Literature and the Construction of Ethnicity (2007) and The Madwoman Can’t Speak: Or Why Insanity Is Not Subversive (1998). Read the full review in the journal MELUS.
“Dalleo and Machado Sáez effectively promote an innovative way of understanding political consciousness and the market, thereby giving due credit to a new generation of writers. They urge readers to reevaluate some of the simplistic ideologies circulating within Latino/a scholarship […] A text worthy of exploring, The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature serves as a welcome invitation to join the authors in exploring this ‘third space of literature’.”
–Margarita Castromán Soto holds an M.A. in English literature from the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras. Her research interests include ethnic literatures, subaltern studies, and gender studies. She currently teaches at the Baldwin School of Puerto Rico and plans to return to academia to pursue a Ph.D. in English literature. Read the full review in the journal Sargasso.
“Questions abound in the academy about the future of literature, many of them auguring its end, or wondering what purposes it serves. This is particularly the case in Latin American studies, where the postcolonial has developed an aversion to literature, or even within high theory, where dominant strands of deconstruction view modern and postmodern literary history as complicit with the failed state. Lurking behind these views, though often understated, is the notion that literature can no longer articulate a sophisticated understanding of politics, resistance and much less utopian longings. Raphael Dalleo and Elena Machado Saez bring the hot topic of Latino/a literature to bear on these important questions. They argue, however, in favor of literature and its political place within the social. Theirs is not a naïve return to sixties politics or garden variety content analysis, but rather a call to scrutinize the way markets shape readers, including critics. The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature will no doubt raise the bar of debates pertaining to the future of literature. It has history, theory and most of all literature, something that many academic critics, even in literature departments, seem to have left behind.”
—Román de la Campa is the Edwin B. and Leonore R. Williams Professor of Romance Languages at the University of Pennsylvania. He is author of a number of books, including Latin Americanism (1999) and Cuba on My Mind (2000).
“Dalleo and Machado Sáez’s transition from a politics of authenticity to a politics of ambiguity corresponds to, and follows from, the directions in which the field of Latino/a Studies is moving. Given contemporary market demands, it is crucial to investigate how post-60s writers negotiate–working within and against–these pressures, rather than dismissing them outright because of their market success. Disrupting the binaries that divide Latinos/as and underscoring a critical hybridity, Dalleo and Machado Sáez recognize the heterogeneity ofLatinidad and facilitate collective Latino/a mobilization. Dalleo and Machado Sáez move from an idealization of the past to a forward-thinking vision of a present and future influenced by the past.”
–Laura Halperin is Assistant Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She is currently working on a book on contemporary Latina novels and memoirs. Read the full review in the journal Latino Studies.
“Especially because of the timeliness of its arguments, but also because of the breadth and depth of its study and argumentation, The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature will be an important text for scholars and students of Latino(a) literature. One can already see how Dalleo and Machado Sáez’s book could well occasion a lively discussion of the next steps in the formation and cultivation of a Latino(a) canon for the twenty-first century.”
–Trenton Hickman is Associate Professor of English at Brigham Young University. His essays have appeared in MELUS, Monographic Review/Revista Monográfica, Studies in the Novel, Journal of Caribbean Studies, Southwestern American Literature, and a number of edited collections. Read the full review in the journal Latino(a) Research Review.
“Raphael Dalleo and Elena Machado Sáez are to be commended on their compelling study of the complex relationship between the Civil Rights and post-Sixties eras of Latino/a-Caribbean literature, politics, and the market. The consideration of the challenges that face Cuban-Americans in their literary and artistic production is particularly timely, as well as their conception of a space for politically engaged, marketable literature in the twenty-first century. For these reasons, among others, The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature is worthy of attention and merits scholarly study.”
–Michelle Johnson Vela is Associate Professor of Language and Literature at Texas A&M Kingsville. Her essays have appeared in Journal of International Women’s Studies, the journal Chiricú and the collection Mediating Chicana/o Culture: Multicultural American Vernacular. Read the full review in the journal Camino Real.
“This book will be of broad interest to Latino/a scholars who have followed the canon wars about who’s in, who’s out, and why. It is the first book to be published on this subject that carefully examines the making of Latino/a literature in all its elements including the politics of marketing, publishing, and even book reviews. The authors clearly illustrate the inherent contradictions and tensions that characterize the making of the Latino/a literary canon. The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature will force scholars to reconsider why some authors and not others are incorporated into their research and teaching.”
–Bridget Kevane is Associate Professor of Latin American and Latino Literature and Studies and Chair of the Department of Modern Languages & Literatures at Montana State University. Her publications include Latino Literature in America, Latina Self-Portraits: Interviews with Contemporary Women Writers co-edited with Juanita Heredia, and Religious Discourse and Cultural Renewal in Contemporary Latino/a Literature.
“The Latino/a Canon critically sharpens our relationship to Latino/a literature through time, through its thematic breaks, and its ambivalent association to the market. Its considerable accomplishment is to reframe contemporary Latino/a writing within the purview of the market as an antagonistic supplement: one that seemingly plays by the rules, but, in fact creates an aftereffect, a tension and imbalance sparked by its critical presence. […] It does so with a complexity and force of argument that compels the reader to reassess his own understanding of U.S. Latino/a literature. Specifically, The Latino/a Canon makes us rethink how U.S. Latino/a writers have not simply been consumed by the market, but how their entry has reconfigured, from within, its eth(n)ical boundaries. This hermeneutic insight is the mark of a forward-looking and transformative criticism.”
–Richard Pérez is Assistant Professor of English at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He is coeditor of Contemporary U.S. Latino/a Literary Criticism (2007). Read the full review in the journal Centro.
“In The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature, Raphael Dalleo and Elena Machado Sáez tackle this development in an engaging and eclectic manner that maps the current critical terrain and looks to find new ways of reading Latino/a literature that does not fall into the trap of nostalgia or simple binaries. […] By providing critical paradigms from which to approach questions concerning the intersection between economic production and literary production Dalleo and Machado Sáez give readers a new critical insight into the field of Latino/a studies. Moreover, their book also offers provocative avenues for further study, such as the place of gender in the critical marginalization of economically successful women writers and the impact of geography on both publishing and political climate for emerging authors.”
–Carmen Ruiz-Castaneda is a doctoral student at the University of Miami. Her fields of specialization are Caribbean and Latino/a literatures. Read the full review in the journal Anthurium.
“Raising an engaging series of piercing, troubling, core questions about the political economy of canon formation, that literary inexorability that literary scholars love to hate but cannot seem to find a way to part with, The Latino/a Canon and the Emergence of Post-Sixties Literature, takes us through the complexities that inhere in particular tabulations of texts even for literary productions whose marginality relative to a mainstream corpus entails the presumption of stability and sameness. Raphael Dalleo and Elena Machado Sáez show a welcome sensibility to regional particularities and cultural discreteness in the outline of the social field of their research, attending, for instance, to the significance of the New York or Miami milieu in determining the place of the works of Puerto Rican, Dominican-American, and Cuban diaspora authors within the contours of the larger corpus known as Latino literature. Their intervention enriches the critical discourse around the writings of U.S. Hispanic authors, an area that suffers from an excess of politically formulaic and hermeneutically predictable readings.”
–Silvio Torres-Saillant is William P. Tolley Distinguished Professor of English and Director of the Latino-Latin American Studies Program at Syracuse University. He is author ofCaribbean Poetics (1997), The Dominican Americans (1998) with Ramona Hernández, and An Intellectual History of the Caribbean (2006).
“Writers of the 1960s and 1970s are, Dalleo and Machado Sáez argue, read as anti-colonialists whose work resonates with the political impact of the civil rights generation. In contradistinction, their successors have sacrificed the political to attain market success, falling into a ‘sell-out’ category. Dalleo and Machado Sáez saliently challenge such readings as they employ Néstor García Canclini’s work on the process of negotiation. […] Ultimately this is an engaging study whose breadth and depth offer intriguing insights into the formation of, and future for, a Latino/a literary tradition.”
–The Year’s Work in English Studies (2009) Chapter XVI. American Literature: The Twentieth Century, by James Gifford, James M. Decker, Michael Boyd, Amy M. Flaxman and Sarah Robertson.