Epub Ana Castillo ✓ The Mixuiahuala Letters PDF/EPUB ✓ The Mixuiahuala ✓

Focusing on the relationship between two fiercely independent women Teresa a writer and Alicia an artist this epistolary novel was written as a tribute to Julio Cortázar's Hopscotch and examines Latina forms of love gender conflict and female friendship Ana Castillo's groundbreaking first novel The Mixuiahuala Letters received an American Book Award from the Before Columbus Foundation and is widely studied as a feminist text on the nature of self conflict

10 thoughts on “The Mixuiahuala Letters

  1. says:

    “In the modern US i married a poor man out of love Poverty had won out and separated us i was of the multitude and survival and perversions were ingrained i had been instilled with cynicism and very soon the only door opened to me to escape the banal destiny planned from birthexplodedinto a billion splinters of sheer farce without a sound”– Ana Castilo The Mixuiahuala LettersI read this on the heels of reading Anzaldua another Chicana feminist It was good timing because I was able to recall what I learned about Chicana feminism from Anzaldua and identify the same themes in this bookThe format of this book was a series of letters from Teresa to her friend Alicia two creative women who refuse to follow traditional roles The letters were very revealing; not only do we experience the friends’ travels around Mexico we’re also able to read their thoughts and also understand the society they lived in and the inner conflict they experiencedBeing a woman is evident in every letter that is written in everything the women experience and how they experience it Race plays a major part as does privilege as Americans and English speakers The letters didn’t have to directly or explicitly address a situation for example colourism sexism yet the themes were very clear and a reminder of how Chicana feminist theory comes from lived experiences“From years afterward you enjoyed telling people that I was from Mixuiahuala It explained the exotic tinge of yellow and red in my complexion the hint of an accent in my baroue speech and most of all the indiscernible origin of my being”“My cousin’s a very nice looking guy He’s been trying to get into films but I’m sure it’s his dark complexion and Huichol like features that are standing in the way of Hollywood discovering him Some years ago he had a small part on a TV show where he played a gang member from the barrio He was told to speak with a heavy accent although my cousin Ignacio speaks four languages and all flawlessly”Throughout there was also some discussion about feminism wifehood and women feeling trapped in their relationships and societies This book was written in the 1980s so I’m sure things have changed since then but so much has also stayed the same“When a woman entered the threshold of intimacy with a man she left the companions of her sex without looking back Her needs had to be sustained by him If not she was to keep her emptiness to herself”I haven’t read many travel stories from women of colour so I found this to be an interesting account of the minority traveller experience especially as a woman“We has abruptly appeared in Mexico as two snags in its patterns Society could do no than snip us out We would have hoped for respect as human beings but the only respect granted a woman is that which a gentleman bestows upon the lady Clearly we were no ladies What was our greatest transgression? We travelled alone”Definitely recommended

  2. says:

    455 Mexico Melancholy profoundly right and wrong it embraces as it strangulatesDestiny is not a metaphysical confrontation with one's self rather society has knit its pattern so tight that a confrontation with it is inevitable There are many gaps in my reading record but one of the largest andor most unforgivable is that of ChicanaXicana literature My return to the university has brought me even closer to that country my homeland loves to bleed the food and the views and the people of that LatinoLatinaLatinx extraction fueler of drug lord narratives and political plans of the Great Wall of Texas or whatever is the name of the latest US scheme to control absolutely what along this particular borderland is injected and extracted I've indulged in Bolaño and Máruez and Allende in a half assed attempt to understand the whole of the countries in the south of this unnaturally spliced continental mass but it's not the whole that's cleaned my house every month for as long as I can remember It's not the whole that's railed against on public television with implications of single mothers and welfare and the utmost need for women like me to sterilize the likes of them out of duty to nation and kith and kind Academia has its ills but shoving me through whatever ice was keeping me from books like The Mixuiahuala Letters is not one of themNo one wants a woman of color in the halls of postmodernism although the politics of that statement's tricky cause there's plenty of white Latinxs on both sides of the nation state and if you've ever parsed the matters of Latinx and Hispanic and black and white brown you know how easily the power relations break down and why one's never permitted to think intersctionality y'know so we've got this postmodernist epistolary novel shoved in Womens and School and Feminism Alright then Let's roll with how the novelty's not much beyond the Hopscotch structuring and the inevitability of talking about menace and abortion and gang rape when it comes to women and even so when it comes poor women and even when it comes women with physical evidence of indigenous blood As it states nothing new The socioeconmoics of colorism and fetishization I am reminded of So Long a Letter with two friends of great divergence and long acuaintance except those two never drifted along the roads of grit and ghosts and godforsaken lies Spring break Tijuana or whatever college kids do these days except that's where one's family resides Tacos and teuila and drug mule delights except that's where one's history bleeds My local supermarket keeps fucking around with Day of the Dead make up and regardless of whether you refer back to The Book of Life or the sex worker led protests against the female homicides of Ciudad Juárez that shit's all sorts of bad faith The irony of my atheist self being respectful of other spirituality's than whatever Christian majority's setting the market price wore off a long time agoMaybe it's the survival aspect that turned me off from this branch of feminism I'd eventually have to learn to respect if I ever wanted to get anywhere in life Sordid conspiracies and violent cartels are far titillating when one follows the trail of bodies instead of side tracking forever behind the ones who got away and it's harder to thrill at the dramatic reports of Mexico when one considers the women who live through them The young rebel the family rejects it falls apart the less young come back the least young conform the family accepts the drugs fall off the children live an inheritance of pre colonial civilization and post colonial livelihood becomes the day to day reuirements of food security love When that happens one can no longer label the violent events of time as excitement freedom necessary experience a tale to tell the grandchildren anything but what they are She could've been raped but she wasn't She could've been killed but she wasn't White girls travel to Mexico in order to perk up their lives a little but the shields of physical wealth and that military industrial complex of a US breathing down the other's neck does wonders for the perks of survival For two women who lack such measures there is a record of friendship that may yet may not may still The hour that was for them for us all who had awakened one morning to see their fields covered with blood rather than the harvest who didn't seek to change the world but lived in good faith and prayer offered to an imposing God for the young women who mended their mens' clothing and held their sons' mouths to the purple nipples of sweet breasts for the man who watched the sun descend behind the mountain every evening and dreamed and when his sons were grown passed on his dreams for the black nights when guitars harmonized with the wind's song to the bottle of regional brew and a hand rolled cigarette to the baptism and a dance of celebration to the aroma of soups simmering on wood burning stoves and filled the bellies of those who worked the fields to a candle that burned in vigil while a hungry mind gulped the printed truth of another's legacy to the owl that called from between the moon and earth while lovers enwrapped their passion on silver tinted grass to the history of the world and to its future to all that had lived and died and had been born again in that moment as i approached an opaue window and pointed my weapon

  3. says:

    45? Review on my blog

  4. says:

    This book was highly recommended to me a while back and I uickly added it to my wish list as it looked exactly like the kind of book I love to read Honestly I'd say this book was a disappointment All the men were losers manipulative or abusive or cruel The women seemed to wander from man to man from loser to loser And that was the plot of the book The two main characters in the book write letters to each other bemoaning the men in their lives and celebrating their strength as powerful women I didn't see any powerful women in this book Instead I saw women who defined themselves over and over in terms of whether or not they had a man In the book's defense the copyright date is 1986 so perhaps the characters in that time frame in that culture were revolutionary I wouldn't recommend this book not even to women friends who are part of this culture

  5. says:

    i loved that there were three optional orders for reading the letters instead of a table of contents and i thought it was beautifully written but i found the two main characters extremely irritatingi suppose it just wasnt my cup of teahowever i LOVE ana castillo's poetry and would suggest checking that out

  6. says:

    “Destiny is not a metaphysical confrontation with one’s self rather society has knit its pattern so tight that a confrontation with it is inevitable”The Mixuiahuala Letters are a work of creative genius and I know that I wasn’t fully able to grasp it When I finished reading the letters I was left unsatisfied with the ending I went back to read the author’s note and I seriously wanted to give a standing ovation The letters aren’t meant to be read in the order we are used to In fact she warns the reader about this in the beginning she then breaks down the different journeys you can take with the book The options are “for the conformist” “for the cynic” and “for the uixotic” The letters allow us a literary voyage following the lives and relationship of Teresa a writer and Alicia an artist The summary of this book claims that we are “focusing on the relationship between two strong and fiercely independent women” and I’m not here to contradict that statement but I will tell you that this book would majorly fail the Bechdel test Every single experience presented to us surrounded men That doesn’t take away from the beauty of the book and I believe it’s done on purpose to show how much conforming to the expectations demands and danger from men hampers their growth The letters are from Teresa to Alicia so we are only able to glimpse one side of the relationship Teresa is a wonderful guide but I wouldn’t say she’s a reliable narrator as we are only able to see the intervening years through her perspective There was a point in the book where Teresa intersperses her letters with poetry It caught me by surprise but it was an amazing addition to the story I want to say so much about this book one that captures so many themes in only 138 pages but there is so much I still have to comprehend I will definitely be reading this book in a different order many times I wonder how much my interpretation of the book will change then The women presented in this book aren’t perfect but they are rebels They refuse to adhere to the conventions of the time that means to shackle them They travel to Mexico by themselves drink and smoke sleep around with men leave their husbands subvert and play around with the roles and scripts thrown at them and spout their opinions and ideas to everyone They are flawed but they are human They are fighting against a world that refuses to accept them as they are and continues to want to mold them against their wishes everywhere they goIf you are looking for a Chicana feminist literary text then this is the book for you If you want to fall in love with words then this is definitely the book for you Ana Castillo’s lyricism shouldn’t be missed I am definitely not giving you a great review here and that’s because there is so much to unpack and it will reuire readings for me to get at the heart of what Ana Castillo wrote Just give this and her writings a chance I am sure that it will be an enriching experience

  7. says:

    Reading The Mixuiahuala Letters felt as the title suggests as if I was following a correspondence albeit a once sided correspondence As all the letters were by the narrator to her friend reminiscing on their past experiences and ultimately their relationship With each letter Castillo’s thoughts come and go one leads to the next snatches of memories longer bits short flashes – her train of thought Making the “story” not about them but how someone actually “reminisces” Unfortunately because of this there is a disjointed feel and it took me a while to get into the book as I wondered where Castillo was going However what was interesting is in using this format Castillo evokes the way we write our correspondences We tap into an energy as if we’re talking withto the person we are writing to The reader can feel the anger love fear and remorse that fill Castillo letters And even though the book itself for me wasn’t successful the concept was

  8. says:

    I love the idea of this book a narrative of multiple options bifurcatedtrifurcated paths story lines that curl back upon themselves then skip forward At the beginning of the book she gives three options for moving forward for the conformist the cynic and the uixotic I couldn’t decide which I was or which I wanted to pretend to be and so I plunged forward I read Letter #1 and then realized none of the three options began with the first letter So I continued to read straight through – nonconformity through conformity

  9. says:

    I found this at the used book store after I had read So Far From God I expected a similar crazy romp but this is a serious book The past is remembered here of two young women traveling Mexico together The air of the novel is hazy as if recollections weren't entirely solid or even necesarrily the way it happened By design surely but I didn't enjoy this book very much I still have it on my shelf so I may go back and read it again

  10. says:

    hooked me was afraid throughout the middle parts traveling alone surrounded by men and ghosts but didnt want to put it down effective with the epistolary form even heartbreaking although i don't get the purpose behind scrambled reading orders i read the uixotic order