Thursday, June 09, 2005

Tenth Anniversary of Latina Letters

A schedule for the 10-Year Anniversary of Latina Letters has been posted on the Campus News site of St. Mary's University. Here it is:

PLACE: All events in San Antonio at St. Mary's University Center, Conference Room A, except a Saturday evening event which is at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center.

COST: Professional educators, $60; students and public, $20.


* Thursday, July 14, 1 to 6 p.m. Conference registration and housing check-in.
* Thursday, 7 p.m., Opening banquet. Reading by Sandra Cisneros. $25, Tickets: Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center Book Store at (210) 351-7787. (Must be purchased by Friday, July 8).
* Friday, July 15, 7 p.m. Readings by Pat Mora and Ana Menéndez (Loving Che).
* Saturday, July 16, 7 p.m. Readings by Lorna Dee Cervantes and Alicia Gaspar de Alba. Screening of Lourdes Portillo's documentary film about the murders young women in Juárez, Señoritas Extraviada / Missing Young Women, at the Guadalupe Theater, 1300 Guadalupe Street. Free and open to the public.

FROM THE DIRECTOR: In 2005 we celebrate 10 years of what critics have called "one of the nation's most important gatherings about literature by Hispanic women." This year, we will discuss and celebrate three decades of Latina Literature in the U.S. The "crossing over" of U.S. Latino/a literature into the awareness of the general American reader began in the 1980s with the publication of Sandra Cisneros' "The House on Mango Street" by Arte Público. The widespread popularity of "The House on Mango Street," led to its eventual publication by Random House, to the awarding of a MacArthur "Genius" fellowship to a Latina writer, and eventually to the acceptance of the significant Latina literary market by the mainstream publishing houses of New York.

On its 10-year anniversary, Latina Letters applauds Sandra Cisneros for helping to open the gates of the mainstream for many Latina writers to follow. Also participating in Latina Letters is a voice of the '80s, poet Lorna Dee Cervantes who will read from her new work. For the decade of the '90s we celebrate Pat Mora, Chicana poet extraordinaire, who opened the mainstream doors to Latina children's literature. Representing the first decade of the 21st century are Alicia Gaspar de Alba and Cuban-American Ana Menéndez, two writers whose works explore both political and social issues in the form of fiction.

Latina Letters will be a forum for issues of literature, art, identity, ethnicity and gender, continuing as it has from the beginning to focus awareness on these important issues.

Gwendolyn Díaz, Ph.D. Director, Latina Letters