Latino USA, Revised Edition: A Cartoon History (Paperback)
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Latino USA represents the culmination of Ilan Stavans's lifelong determination to meet the challenges of capturing the joys, nuances, and multiple dimensions of Latino culture within the context of the English language. In this cartoon history of Latinos, Stavans seeks to combine the solemnity of so-called "serious literature" and history with the inherently theatrical and humorous nature of the comics. The range of topics includes Columbus, Manifest Destiny, the Alamo, William Carlos Williams, Desi Arnaz, West Side Story, Castro, Guevera, the Bay of Pigs, the Cuban Missile Crisis, Neruda, GarcÃMÃ¡uez, the Mariel Boatlift, and Selena. Stavans represents Hispanic civilization as a fiesta of types, archetypes, and stereotypes. These "clichÃ©igurines" include a toucan (displayed regularly in books by GarcÃMÃ¡uez, Allende, and others), the beloved Latino comedian Cantinflas (known as "the Hispanic Charlie Chaplin"), a masked wrestler, and Captain America. These multiple, at times contradictory voices, each narrating various episodes of Latino history from a unique perspective, combine to create a carnivalesque rhythm, democratic and impartial. For, as Stavans states, "History, of course, is a kaleidoscope where nothing is absolute." Latino USA, like the history it so entertainingly relates, is a dazzling kaleidoscope of irreverence, wit, subversion, anarchy, politics, humanism, celebration, and serious and responsible history.
About the Author
Ilan Stavans is Lewis-Sebring Professor of Latin American and Latino Culture and Five-College Fortieth Anniversary Professor at Amherst College. He is the author of Latino USA: A Cartoon History and editor of the Norton Anthology of Latino Literature. His work has been translated into a dozen languages and adapted into theater and film. Recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and of many international prizes and honors, he lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.
Lalo Alcaraz is the prolific creator of the nationally-syndicated political comic strip "La Cucaracha" as well as an award-winning editorial cartoonist and radio host. A San Diego State University and UC-Berkeley graduate, he is a member of the faculty at Otis College of Art and Design. His art and activism has been recognized across the U.S.A.