Monday, October 24, 2005


Monday’s post from Daniel Olivas

Demetría Martínez is an author, activist, lecturer and columnist. Her collected essays, Confessions of a Berlitz-Tape Chicana (Chicana & Chicano Visions of the Americas) (University of Oklahoma Press) is forthcoming in November 2005. Her books include the widely translated novel, Mother Tongue (Ballantine), winner of a Western States Book Award for Fiction, and two books of poetry, Breathing Between the Lines: Poems and The Devil's Workshop both published by the University of Arizona Press. She writes a column for the National Catholic Reporter, an independent progressive newsweekly.

CLASSIC REISSUE: The Elegant Variation recently published my review of HarperCollins/Rayo’s 35th anniversary reissue of the classic novel Chicano by the late journalist Richard Vasquez.

PRESS RELEASE: Con Tinta is a coalition of cultural activists (Chicano/Latino poets and writers) who believe in affirming a positive and pro-active presence in American literature. We come together in the spirit of intellectual exchange, of creating dialogue with our communities and beyond, of recognizing our literary and social histories, and of establishing alliances with other cultural and political organizations. Our mission is to create awareness through the cultivation of emerging talent, through the promotion and presentation of artistic expression, and through the collective voice of support to our members, our communities, and our allies.
In March 8-11 of 2006, Con Tinta members will participate at the Association of Writers and Writing Programs Annual Conference in Austin to engage in a series of necessary discussions about politics, culture, activism and art. As part of its community outreach efforts, Con Tinta will host a celebration through an event outside of the conference grounds. Programming at a local venue will include a dedication to two beloved veteranos of Chicano letters, Rolando Hinojosa-Smith and raulsalinas; a reading by renowned authors and emerging talent; a communal meal; and a baile.

Con Tinta Advisory Circle:
Kathleen Alcalá, Brenda Cárdenas, Lisa Chávez, Rigoberto González, Lorraine López, Daniel A. Olivas and Richard Yañez

Con Tinta contact person: Rigoberto González, Department of English, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, 608 S. Wright Street, English Building, MC-208 Urbana, IL 61801. Email: Phone: (217) 333-2926

CRISOL PRODUCTIONS IS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE THE RELEASE OF LOTERIA DE LA MUJER: Renowned San Diego artist, Nuvia Crisol Guerra, has fused her vibrant artwork with the traditional Mexican game “Loteria.” Crisol’s striking depictions celebrate 20 universal stages of a woman’s life. These colorful portraits speak to men and women of all cultures and generations. In addition to the game, these images are also available as packets of greeting cards and individual post cards. Visit her website for more information.

CONFERENCE: El Clamor Público - 150 Years of Latino Newspapers in Southern California.

The Huntington Library, San Marino, CA
October 28, 2005
8:30 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Sponsored by the Huntington-USC Institute on California and the West, USC Annenberg School for Communication, California State University, Northridge Graduate Studies Program Distinguished Speakers Series, and the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation.Founded in Los Angeles in 1855, the newspaper El Clamor Público staunchly defended equal rights in California. Though labeled treacherous, incendiary, and anti-American, eighteen-year-old journalist Francisco P. Ramírez‘s newspaper courageously reported lynchings, land frauds, vigilante terror, racial profiling, and legal injustices targeting Spanish-language communities. Ramírez’s faith in the U.S. Constitution guided him as he urged readers to elect trustworthy representatives and to learn English so they could defend their rights. He printed the Declaration of Independence in Spanish and encouraged Californios and Anglos to “work together in the same spirit.” During its four and a half years, the newspaper published political opinion, international news, literary expressions, and social commentaries.This conference will examine the history and legacy of El Clamor Público through and exploration of Latino newspapers in Southern California’s past, present, and future. The conference is free and open to the public; registration is required by October 24. Luncheon will be provided for a prepaid fee. For registration information, go here. For more information on the conference contact conference coordinator Joseph Legaspi at his e-mail.

RAIN OF GOLD LIVE ON STAGE: Don't miss Victor Villaseñor’s Rain of Gold live! The most recent version of The Western Stage’s sweeping adaptation is a must see, and will only be in Salinas, October 22nd through November 5th, 2005. For information and tickets visit here.

UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL: Sunday, October 30, 6:30PM to 8:00PM - Tongue & Groove: A monthly offering of short fiction, poetry and music. The featured writers include: Glen David Gold ("Carter Beats the Devil"), Salvador Plascencia ("The People of Paper"), Daniel Olivas ("Devil Talk"), Carmen Esquer and Maria Cristina Jimenez. Musical guest: Carmella Rappazzo. Hosted by Conrad Romo.

Venue: The Hotel Café. Address: 1623 1/2 N. Cahuenga Blvd., Hollywood, 90028. Admission: Free! For more information call: 323-937-0136. Or visit:

All done. So, until next Monday, enjoy the intervening posts from my compadres y comadre at La Bloga. ¡Lea un libro


msedano said...

wish crisol had a larger scale image of those cards. they look pretty cool.

mother tongue, while an outstanding novel, always disturbs me when i consider the foolishness of the woman. is her name "maria"? she falls for this fellow, head over heels, peels him grapes, makes him tortillas, beds him down. then seems to have been betrayed by a typical tom-cat of a male. and maria has no hard feelings about that. obviously, she's concerned that her fatherless son have a multicultural identity, that the quondam lover is not one of the faces on the wall of dead. women should make good choices, but this is not one of the dimensions of the novel. i suppose i'll have to read thru the essays, ese, maybe there's something to understand therein.


Manuel Ramos said...

Mother Tongue is a classic - one of the reasons being what Michael hints at: the woman is not perfect but she is heroic and so what if love gets in the way of "doing the right thing?" I am looking forward to reading the new collection of essays - thanks for that infomation, Daniel. Ms. Martinez is a very skillful writer- poet, essayist and novelist. Her intelligence shines through her words.

daniel olivas said...

"mother tongue" was one of those books that inspired me to keep writing. yes, she is imperfect (as manuel notes); but those are the kind of characters that i like!