Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Lorna Dee's Contemporary Chicano/a Literature Course Description

I think of my blog, and blogs in general, as being like an artist's open studio open 24/7. Or, my working journal or writers notebook left open on the table. Today, you have a rare glimpse into my office. I may not keep this up long, it's a first draft of my syllabus course description for a contemporary Chicano/a writers course I'll be teaching for Chicano Studies in the spring. Any CUB students out there? There's still room in the class. (oh, yeah, Sheryl's one of the poets I'll be teaching.) I'm stoked. And watching the snow ...

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Contemporary Chicano/a Writers (CHST 3824 - 001)
"Chicana Poetry: Floricanto in the New World"
Lorna Dee Cervantes, Associate Professor
TR 9:30 - 10:30 AM, CLRE 104
University of Colorado - Boulder
Spring 2007


Course Description
This section will examine the role of Chicana poetry and the play of "Flor y Canto" (Flower and Song) (Xochitl in Cuicatl) in the development of Chicano literature, and by extension, American Poetry. It will provide an overview of the most important writers of prose fiction of the past three decades while focusing on women's poetry and making (praxis and poesis) -- and the erasure of narrative in the progression of Chicano fiction from naturalism, realism, and romanticism to post-modernism and post-avant modes of discourse. An emphasis on the indigenous voice and literary strategies and the interplay and construction of identity, comunidád, and power while transversing and transgressing the divisions and borders of discourse will be placed upon the consideration of discursive practices: prayer, song, poem, story, novel, essay, article, writ. We will discuss vision; and Sandra Cisnero's journeys from Bad Boys to a House On Mango Street, and back; Ana Castillo's Invitation to her crossings into the body and a body of crítica and the critical in relation to her theory of Xicanisma and how it applies to definitions and stances of gender; Demetria Martinez's tale of the self to a tale of testimony in a court of law for the act of telling; Richard Rodriguez's wrestling with telling and his incomprehension and dis-recognition of an ancient system of comadres and comadrisma, the psychology of telling, and how it applies to the rise of the Chicano/a literary anthology via certain advances and changes in print technologies; Naomi Quiñonez's historical gaze into the heart of Helen and "Malinche" and seeing through to the other side of the Smoking Mirror; Cherríe Moraga and Gloria Anzaldúa's march across This Bridge Called My Back across the baring straight into The Last Generation at the crossroads and crosshairs of the borderlands; we'll see and slurp Carmen Tafolla's Salsa and slappin' as she gets her tortillas together for a new generation of literary educators; and sense the sinuous stirrings of Restless Serpents and the releasing power of phrasing Restless Serpents redux from seminal literary figure Bernice Zamora's hands -- ever releasing into the hands of contemporary poets such as Tammy Gómez and Sheryl Luna as Sheryl reteaches us to see and Pity the Drowned Horses. This course will provide an outline of the history of the Chicano Renaissance, 1962 - 2002 as a continuation of the history of Flor y Canto, a tradition and cultural force in the making of the Americas for more than five millennia. Theories of the land and the relation of language to the land will also be examined, along with the relations of language to power and how it is exercised in the Américas, the United States, and on indigenous lands. This course will assume the interrelationship among all of the arts and ways of producing culture. This course assumes the illusion and erasure of borders and examines the words on the page from a global perspective, as "No man is an island" as no woman ever is a penninsula. This course will adhere to indigenous American values: respect, humility, temperance, prudence, preserverance, compassion. This course will require extensive reading and writing. Expect surprise visits from guest poets. RECOMMENDED PREQ. CHST 1031 or 1044. (Some Spanish, helpful but not required.) (Students interested in submitting creative work should notify professor in advance and provide a sample of creative writing for review and approval before or during the first week of class.)

6 Comments:

Anonymous nezua limon xolagrafik-jonez said...

sounds like a great class. wish i could be there. :)

20/12/06 16:57  
Blogger Sheryl said...

Wow. Thanks Lorna.

21/12/06 16:27  
Anonymous Emily P said...

Wish i could go! Maybe i'll show up some time!

22/12/06 18:14  
Blogger solmatic said...

i wish i could take this class (and have a postcard outside my window!). thanks for posting this.

23/12/06 12:22  
Blogger Diana Marie Delgado said...

Wow. Would love to take that class.

26/12/06 11:05  
Blogger Juliana said...

Lorna, I would love to be in your class. Which textbook will you be using? Juliana

31/12/06 17:04  

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