Sunday, February 21, 2010

Puertorican Literature ~ Literatura Puertoriquena

I have recently come up with yet another great goal this year. I’m always reading but due to lack of space I don’t keep very many books. Well for me three bookshelves is not a lot or anywhere near enough space. *wink* So while I was dusting and reorganizing my bookshelf I notice how small my Latino / Hispanic literature collection of books is. Right now it my collection fits neatly in one pretty row of my book shelf. If you didn’t guess yet, my brilliant goal is to beef it up with more great literature.
There are many wonderful authors but I decided I must begin by expanding my collection of Puertorican authors. It made me a little sad that we have barely more than a century of Puertorican literature. Before that time period only people of other countries such as priests or colonizers wrote about Puerto Rico. A few oral stories survived but anything written was forbidden by the Spanish colonial government until the United States invaded Puerto Rico during the Spanish-American War and the island was ceded to the Americans as a condition of the Treaty of Paris of 1898.
I feel it is of utmost importance the history of Puerto Rico should also be expressed by those who lived it. A point of view I would love to see much more of. The good news is that in the last century literature has continued to flourish and the people of Puerto Rico have a voice.
During my online search, I found a fantastic bookstore in Puerto Rico that sells used college textbooks. As I go through the books I will begin a series of posts with a short biography and important works.
These are the first batch of books I ordered:
- Cuentos Puertoriquenos de Hoy (1959) with prologue and notes by Rene Marques.
- La Purificacion en la Calle del Cristo (1958) – Rene Marques
- La Resaca (1975) by Enrique A. Laguerre
- La Importancia de Llamarse Daniel Santos (1988) by Luis Raphael Sanchez

If anyone has any recommendations on where to get books or suggestions on what to read next I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment.


SciFi Latino said...

You probably have heard of these but here goes: Usmaíl (Pedro Juan Soto) and La Charca are good for mixing PR history and literature. Insularismo (Antonio S. Pedreira) for essays; 'Tuntún de pasa y grifería y otros poemas' (Luis Palés Matos) and Julia de Burgos for poetry. Sorry these aren't more updated but they're classics and must-reads for the well-rounded PRican literature reader. Plus I'm behind too! Lots of stuff I haven't read.

BellaVida said...

Its not easy to keep up, especially when the titles are not readily available at your local bookstore. Another reason I like to post what I'm reading is you may not have heard of a particular author otherwise.

Thanks for the great recommendations.