Atlantic Continuities in Tomás Rivera and Rudolfo Anaya

in The Oxford Handbook of Latino Studies

Quesada, Sarah. “Atlantic Continuities in Tomás Rivera and Rudolfo Anaya.”

The Oxford Handbook of Latino Literature, edited by Ilan Stavans, Oxford University Press, 2019, pp. 104- 124.

Link to Oxford Handbooks Online

This chapter draws from Tomás Rivera’s poetry and Rudolfo Anaya’s short story “The Man Who Could Fly” (2006) to read continuities of an Atlantic world formation within the Southwest. Specifically, this essay compares paradigms of a remembered “Congo” informed by dialectics of empire concerning both Central African exploration—in the case of Rivera—and plantational Latin American and American slavery—in the case of Anaya. While this article argues that in the case of Rivera, Henry Stanley’s exploration haunts the spatialization of Rivera’s poetry, in Anaya, by contrast, Atlantic continuities are chiefly embedded in a transnational comparison with Latin American Caribbean writers such as Gabriel García Márquez and Alejo Carpentier. Applying Caribbean thinker Edouard Glissant’s theorization of “Relation” to these Chicano narratives, this chapter decodes the racial geographies of the Southwest to theorize how landscape and fiction work together to memorialize subaltern Atlantic memory.