Despite Chile’s rich traditions of literary writing, relatively little attention has been paid to women writers and their contribution to the national and the Latin American canon until the past couple of decades in comparison with their male counterparts. In this article I will draw on scholarly, critical, and personal/anecdotal insights to discuss a number of both established and emerging women writers.
Art and Culture
Cuban music has been described as a marriage (successful) between the guitar and the drum. An excellent metaphor, but not entirely accurate because they forgot to mention the piano since there are few countries who have pianists as gifted as Cuba. From the 19th century, with the likes of Cervantes, Saumell, and Espadero to the 20th , Cuba was blessed with figures such as Roig, Romeu, Lecuona, Lilí Martínez and Peruchín, not to mention Bebo Valdés, Rubén González, and Frank Emilio Flynn.
The production, circulation and consumption of printed texts drew the contours of the political culture of socialism in times of the Second International.1 With the advent of mass politics, processes of institutionalization and nationalization of the Socialist Movement were facilitated by the growing presence of printed matter in the daily lives of an increasing number of people, linked to increased literacy rates and unprecedented expansion of journalism and publishing.
Football has been ingrained in Latin American culture since its introduction to the region in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In some cases, football serves as a national identity (Brazil) or can be a terrifyingly powerful tool used by certain organizations (Colombia) (Politics of Football). Considering how dear the sport is to Latin Americans, I am surprised that there does not exist the maxim, “God, Family, Football.” However popular football may be, there is no matching the celebrity of the world’s greatest players.
If you walk down the Calle 1 in Havana, Cuba, you will come across a wrought-iron gate fixed with the Star of David in the center. Beyond the gates is a geometric 1950s-era building whose front doors are marked with gold menorahs. Since 1953, the Synagogue Bet Shalom (also known as El Patronato) has been a reminder of the Jewish population throughout Cuba.
“Reality is so bereft of humanity, so barbaric, that we cannot grasp it without the delicacy of art. Through art we can feel the loss, and we can understand it without falling prey to sensationalism,” explained filmmaker Lourdes Portillo when I interviewed to her in 2009. My whole life has been shaped by art and literature, and it is no coincidence that one documentary – Lorudes Portillo’s Señorita Extraviada (Missing Young Woman, 2001) – changed the course of my life.