Literature of the Border; or, Of coyotes and carnales



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Required Texts: (available at Northlight and Barnes and Noble)

Ana Castillo, The Guardians

Alicia Gaspar de Alba, Desert Blood: The Juarez Murders

Luis Urrea, The Devil’s Highway and Into the Beautiful North

Daniel Venegas, The Adventures of Don Chipote
From: Barrio Boy, Ernesto Galarza; Republic of East LA, Luis Rodriguez; Woman Hollering Creek, Sandra Cisneros; Ramón Pérez, Diary of an Undocumented Immigrant (Google books)
Films: El Norte (clips), Señorita Extraviada, Which Way Home, Sleep Dealer
Aug. 20 T: course introduction

22 Th: www.pbs.org/itvs/storm-that-swept-mexico/watch/ and

www.pbs.org/kpbs/theborder/history/index.html; Santiago Vaquera-Vasquez,

“Notes from an Unrepentant Border Crosser, South Atlantic Quarterly 105:4,

Fall 2006 (available online through the SSU library)
27 T: from Barrio Boy (excerpt); discussion of journalistic pieces (supplied

by the class); clips, El Norte

29 Th: The Guardians pp. 3- 53; discussion of journalistic pieces

Sept. 3 T: The Guardians pp. 57-107; articles on the drug wars (supplied by the class)

5 Th: The Guardians pp. 108-156; Helena Simonett, “Technobanda and the Politics

of Identity” in Mexican Musical Life across Borders

10 T: The Guardians pp. 159-end; from My Father Was a Toltec (TBA)

12 Th: Cisneros, “Woman Hollering Creek” and Rodriguez, “Sometimes You

Dance with a Watermelon”
17 T: Desert Blood pp. 1-58; Rodriguez, “La Operación”

19 Th: Desert Blood pp. 59-140; critical essay (TBA) or reviews


24 T: Desert Blood pp. 141-222; clips from Traffic

26: Th: Desert Blood pp. 223-316


Oct. 1 T: Señorita Extravida

3 Th: discussion of Señorita Extravida; Desert Blood, pp. 317-end


8 T: Devil’s Highway pp. xi-53 (through “In Veracruz”); Pérez, Diary of an

Undocumented Immigrant (google): “Crossing the Border” and “Headed North”

10 Th: Devil’s Highway pp. 54-114 (“through “Bad Step at Bluebird”); Pérez

(google): “The Runner” and “The House of Serna”

15 T: Devil’s Highway pp. 115-168 (“The Trees and the Sun”); Pérez, “The

Robbery” (google)

17 Th: Devil’s Highway pp. 169-end


22 T: Don Chipote, “Introduction” and pp 21-54

24 Th: Don Chipote, pp 55-102


29 T: Don Chipote, pp 103-end

31 Th: Into the Beautiful North chs. 1-9 (pp. 3-84); script of A People Divided,

Hector Gonzalez (PBS online, The Border)
Nov. 5 T: Into the Beautiful North chs. 10-18 (pp. 85-177)

7 Th: Into the Beautiful North, chs. 19-26 (pp. 178-266)


12 T: Which Way Home

14 Th: Into the Beautiful North, chs. 27-epilogue (267-338) and film discussion


19 T: Sleep Dealer; critical essay TBA

21 Th: discussion of Sleep Dealer; c/c with clips from El Norte


26 T: preparation/research, final paper

28 Th: THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY


Dec. 3 T: “catch up” class

5 Th: conclusions; final paper due


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