Wetback American

I'm educated but brown so no matter where I go I'm a Wetback American.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Do we exist?

I feel like life has been slowly radicalizing me.  I started my doctoral work refusing to work on "Latinx" subjects because I didn't want to be pigeonholed as a Mexican researcher who only studies Latinx people and yet here I am refocused and refocusing my work on Latinx subjects because I was handed Borderlands by Gloria Anzaldua.  It wasn't until I was literally crying from suddenly feeling connected to something in my class at such a deep level that I realized I hadn't connected to any research that way.  I read research and researchers and connected but on the surface.  I can understand where they are coming from but they didn't make me feel naked and raw.  No one was "Killing me softly with" their words until Gloria.

I'm going to be honest, I haven't finished Borderlands yet.  I stop and read it in chunks but she reveals me so much that I can't stand the pain of reading of her words at times.  My dad just had major surgery to remove cancer from his body.  After 5 days in the hospital, he is home but I'm still on edge waiting to have to rush him back.  So today I turned to Gloria to help me find focus and a bit of self.  She knows me.  Here were today's words,

     When I saw poetry written in Tex-Mex for the firs time, a feeling of pure joy flashed through
      me.  I felt like we really existed as a people. (p. 82)

That is why I'm refocusing my work.  Because I felt that when I read her words for the first time.  My struggle was not unique and solitary but a way to connect.  Others had walked this path!  I want to make sure that other Latinx people find Gloria and others like her.  We aren't alone.  We exist. 

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