MediaExample1 - [an MAS 108 Section 3 Professors Barrera...

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Unformatted text preview: [an _ MAS 108, Section 3 Professors Barrera and Tabera 05/5/09 I have found an article about Sandra Cisneros and her life as a writer on an on—line journal called The Modern American Poetry, whose purpose is to help all readers of modern poetry. It was designed by Mathew Hut, and was edited by Cary Nelson. The article itself was written by Jane Juffer. My search was not very easy. At first, I had attempted to find an article about Selena because I remember my sister being a big fan of hers, and I became one too as a child. However, I was not able to find an article about Selena’s life that I really liked because I already knew much of her life story and wanted to find information that I did not know about. I then decided to look for information on Sandra Cisneros. I purchased “House on Mango Street” not so long ago and decided to look for information on Sandra because I wanted to get a glimpse of what I will read about soon (I have not had the chance to read the book), as well as to learn about Sandra. In my search, I Googled “Sandra Cisnero” and I found the article on the second Google page. The websites” address is “Wrenglishillinoisedu. The article informs the public that Sandra Cisnero is a very famous Chicana writer who wrote poetry and novels, one of them being The House on Mango Street. In her novel, The House on Mango Street, Sandra writes about a “Mexican-American girl that is growing up irra working-class Chicago neighborhood, much as Cisneros did herself,” thus the book included the struggles that Cisnero faced. as a Mexican American. What I found interesting was that Cisnero’s novel was a result of the anger and frustration she felt in seeing how other college students were different than her; they did not face the difficulties that many Mexican Americans did. This fact made me conclude that her college classmates were not Mexican American, which could have been a result of the educational inequalities Mexican Americans were facing. Mexican Americans were taught to become part of the manual labor force, and higher education was not promoted (Tabera, 04/15/09). Cisnero must have been one of the few, if not the only, Mexican American student in her college. Cisnero’s life story is much like many other Mexican Americans mentioned in lecture. I can compare her to Ruben Salazar, a news paper reporter, who through his reports, helped the Mexican Community in their struggle for equality (Tabera 4/30/09). Sandra, just like Ruben, used her writing, as a means to express herself and let the community know what was going on within the Mexican American community. Sandra Cisneros' Career Page 1 of 3“ MODCRNAMCNCHNPOHEY Sandra Cisneros' Career Jane Juffer In the introduction to Alfred A. Knopfs 1994, ten—year anniversary reprinting of her House on Mango Street, Sandra Cisneros recalls what initially inspired the now internationally acclaimed novel. As a graduate student in the University of Iowa Writers WOrkshop, Cisneros felt alienated by discussion of Gaston Bachelard’s Poetics of Space. She says, "What was this guy talking about when he mentioned the familiar and comforting 'house of memory'? It was obvious he never had to clean one or pay the landlord rent for one like ours" (xiii-xiv). Cisneros' alienation gave rise to anger, which in turn prompted the writing of House on Mango Street; the lyrical novel describing the lifeofiayoung Mexican-American girl _ in a workingglass, thgago neighborhood, much as Cisneros hersETfididflh an attempt—to“ ' ’— establish the difference of this kind of home“ fiorfitfie'ofi'e her fellow students remembered, Cisneros sought what she calls an "anti—academic voice-~a child's voice, a girl's voice, a poor girl's voice, a spoken voice, the uniceofan AmericanfMexican“ (xv). Ironically, this anti—academic novel has become widely acciarmedt‘té"Sfi‘i‘té‘EEEfié’tfiéEéfitfiégimmg in 1985 when it won the Before Columbus Book Award. Furthermore, it has represented an important position in debates over multiculturalism--the ability to speak to specific cultural experiences and yet claim literary, even canonical, value. Since the late 19805, House has been part of the university culture wars, perhaps most prominently at Stanford University, whose revamping of its traditional Western civilization requirement became the subject of much right- wing moralizing. Since then, numerous critical articles and further acclaimed publications by Cisneros have largely succeeded in quieting defenders of the canon who feared that texts such as House did not meet literary muster. By 1998, with multiculturalism largely integrated into English department curriculum, Cisneros was included in the Norton Anthology of American Literature for the first time; it excerpted six short stories, all told from a youth point of View, from her 1991 collection, Woman Hollering Creek. Cisneros has in many ways become the representative Chicana in the reconstruction of the canon, yet much of her work has been elided in the focus on House and the youth stories in WHC. Even as these texts appear regularly on American literature syllabi, Cisneros' three volumes of poetry and adult short stories, the latter appearing in the second half of WHC, have been largely ignored in academia. Although the acceptance of the youth stories has been an important step toward increasing access to Chicana literature, it has dramatically simplified Cisneros and suggests that the push for multiculturalism and inclusion does not always extend to the difficult intersections of adult sexuality and race nor to representations of "minorities" who are not "role models." Anthologies and even, to a somewhat lesser degree, critical articles, find it easier to focus on the more "universal" coming—of-age themes and stories that present ethnic role models than those texts that represent the sometimes angry and disenchanted, frankly sexual, ofien ambiguous and always complicated adult Chicana that speaks in much of Cisneros' work. An example of this voice appears in the Oxford anthologized poem "Little Clown, My Heart"; the poem speaks to the ambiguities of desire--the heart as both "fleshy undertongue of sorrows" and "Acapulco cliff diver." It comes from Loose Woman, whose title poem of the same name speaks to Cisneros' fierce sexual independence: "I'm an aim-well, / shoot-sharp, / sharp—tongued, / sharp—thinking, / fast-speaking, lfoot-loose, /loose-tongued, Act-loose, /woman-on-the-loose / loose woman. / Beware, 5/5/2009 ...
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course MAS 10B at San Jose State.

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MediaExample1 - [an MAS 108 Section 3 Professors Barrera...

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