29 July 2013

Reading for Chapter 5

It was time to move on to Chapter 5, which focuses on literary criticism.  Thankfully, I'm used to lit crit, so I hope this chapter moves smoothly so that I can return with gusto to revising Chapter 4. 

My role model for this chapter is AnaLouise Keating again.  This weekend I began to really dive into her Women Reading Women Writing: Self-Invention in Paula Gunn Allen, Gloria Anzaldua, and Audre Lorde.  It's an amazing book as you can imagine, and it's right up my alley.

Keating writes of Allen, Anzaldua, and Lorde:

Rather than deny the contradictions they experience as they negotiate among numerous groups, they explore them in writing.  By thus translating their lives into words, they reinvent themselves and enact new forms of identity, nondual modes of subjectivity that blur the boundaries between apparently distinct peoples.  …maintain that language does simply reflect reality but instead reshapes it. Yet they take this belief in language’s performative powers even further by associating it with precolonial nonwestern oral traditions.  In so doing, they simultaneously spiritualize and politicize their words. – AnaLouise Keating, Women Reading Women Writing

I keep writing in the margins, "YES! Me too! This is what I desire to do!" 
I do believe indeed that language reshapes reality.  And, speaking of language as prayer as incantations as spells, yesterday I wrote some words for a friend publishing a book on pre-Filipino text Baybayin (http://www.sulatngkaluluwa.com/).  Here's a snippet of what I wrote about the word he'll translate for me:

Golondrina Ibon
Cristina Rose
Los Angeles, California, USA
La Golondrina Ibon, the river swallow bird, is my guide.  She speaks to me about my ancestors, and she teaches me to be more “como pajaritas,” like birds, flying and enjoying all that life has to offer.  She is a hard-worker too and builds her nests along the rivers, rivers that cross borders and cover the Earth.  Putting her efforts into nepantla and babaylan endeavors, she is a Mestiza creatrix.  Her erotic and empowered energy transform everything she touches.  

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