Thursday, January 29, 2009

We're Next!

Ahhhhhh, the internets--land of viral image candy! Here's a recent "semiotic" meditation on the Latino future of the United States forwarded to me by my crazy cuñada from Austin!

The Department of English and Comparative Literature at San Diego State University,

Although I am utterly biased, especially since I got elected as Chair, I would have to say that the Department of English and Comparative Literature at SDSU is one of the best West Coast literature departments I have run across. One of the things I am most proud of, and something I have been webmastering since I was using Mosaic 1.3 (eventually using Netscape Communicator's built-in editing machine to author) is the Department's main website. Say what you will, but it just is not your grandfather's English department webpage. (Ole Miss, you know what I am talking about!)

After two months offline to bring it up to ADA standards, I am happy to say the neon excess and garish logic of the original page is back online. Hit the image above and check it out! When you get there, wave your mouse over the bard to wake him up!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Gloria Anzaldúa Alert!

Ever since Gloria Anzaldúa screamed at a shivering Laredense boy next to me at UT Austin something along the lines of: "don't you know, can't you imagine niño how you have a long mystical/psychological root running from your soul out your ass that goes down and ties you to the bowels of the earth" (Dios Mio, where's Siggy Freud [channeling Don Juan from Carlos Castaneda] when you need him?)... ever since then I have been a huge fan of Texas's unique mistress of belles-lettres and more; go here for a brief unpublished take on Gloria and more I penned back in the day; in any event, my cool comadre Norma Cantú, author of Canícula, has asked that I spread the word on an upcoming Anzaldúa conference in San Antonio at UTSA; here's the lowdown:
El Mundo Zurdo: An International Conference on the Work and Life of Gloria E. Anzaldúa

Sponsored by
The Society for the Study of Gloria E. Anzaldúa (SSGA) and the Women's Studies Institute at the University of Texas at San Antonio
May 16-17, 2009

Call for Proposals

The Society for the Study of Gloria E. Anzaldúa seeks submission of proposals for papers, panels of 3-4 papers, roundtables, workshops, or performances for its First International Conference on the work and life of Gloria E. Anzaldúa on the fifth anniversary of her passing. We welcome proposals involving all facets of Anzaldúa's life and work. The following tracks are merely suggested conceptual groupings for panel and performance presentations:

· BORDERS—explorations of border theory, borderlands ethos and other concepts of Anzaldúan thought focused on this key concept of her work

· GENDER AND SEXUALITY STUDIES—el mundo zurdo and the atravesados, key to Anzaldúa's thinking and application of her philosophical work

· EDUCATION—pedagogical concerns surrounding her literary and philosophical works. Some questions that may arise: what are some challenges of teaching Anzaldúa? How does Anzaldúa's thought apply to teaching?

· INTERNATIONAL AND TRANFRONTERA—The effects of globalization and market economies on culture. What is the status of Anzaldúa studies at the international level?

· SPIRITUALITY—Explorations of Anzaldúa's spiritual teachings. How can we heal the earth and ourselves?


Proposals must include the following:

· 250-word proposal narrative
· 100-word abstract suitable for publication in the conference program book
· Submissions for Panels must include proposals and abstracts for each paper and the name, address, phone number(s), e-mail address, and institutional affiliation of each participant
· Audio/visual needs
· Contact person's name, address, phone number(s), e-mail address, and institutional affiliation

All materials must be electronically date-stamped by February 15, 2009. Proposers will be notified of acceptance by March 15, 2009.

Questions about the submission process may be sent to:

Click this image for even more info! Órale!

Kung Fu: Nostalgia City

I was trawling the web "researching" and stumbled upon this blast from my past posted here for no other reason than jonesing for a fix of nostalgia!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Back in the Day; Nostalgia For/With Derrida

Careful readers of this blog may know that I carry a torch for our sadly departed guru of deconstruction, Jacques Derrida--evidence appears throughout Tex[t]-Mex as well as here, here, here, here, here, here, and, last but not least, here, a syllabus for my 1998 seminar on Borges and Derrida. Dr. Michael Mahin, one of the stars of that seminar, and now a lecturer for our department, just passed me a fragment/shard from that class, a collective letter we wrote to Jacques, then at Irvine, to come attend our colloquia.

He didn't show.

But we were not hard on the guy! We toasted him and as well as the shade of Jorge Luis "Georgie" Borges with love and good cheer; it was quite a seminar. It boasted the talents of now Dr. Mahin, Tomás Riley, late of the Taco Shop poets, Vincent Biondo, now a Professor of Philosophy at Fresno State, my old GTA Michael Leamy, Carlos Amador, now finishing his PhD at UT Austin, and a host of others. Gracias to Michael for pushing me into a vat of luxurious deconstructive nostalgia!

Art and the Taco Truck

John Paul Gutierrez, regular galleryblog partner in crime and old chum (when he's not raging up the editorial ladder at Sage Publications), writes in to tip our eyes to new fine art prints now available that immortalize Taco Trucks! Very Cool!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Carmen Miranda, From Bananas to Buttocks

Just have time to post a quick YouTube video in honor of Carmen Miranda as a plug for Myra Mendible's cool cultural studies tome for UT Press, From Bananas to Buttocks: The Latina Body in Popular Film and Culture.

That Damned Talented Gustavo Arellano is at it Again in the LA TIMES

And, in honor of this article, a suggestion, from regular twisted reader Michael Wyatt Harper:

Dolores Del Rio Immortalized in Mexico City

Galleryblog reader Dr. David Diego Rodriguez writes in to give word of a Dolores Del Rio street (map above) in Mexico City; here's the missive:


While driving in Mexico City, I saw a street that was named Dolores del Rio. I wanted to take a picture of the street sign, but there was too much traffic and no parking available. I have a attached a scan of the map from Guía Roji.

David Diego Rodríguez
and, here, courtesy of Dr. Macro, a Del Rio glossy!

Lupe Vélez

A quick link to a small archive of quality Lupe Velez snapshots at Dr. Macro's fine site--the image above has been colorized by one of Macro's contributors! The image, below, reproduced in Tex[t]-Mex, remains my all-time fave "capture"of Mexico's Hollywood star. You can access two fine Lupe Velez high resolution mini-archives here.


A "Mexican Standoff"

Yet another omission from the pages of Tex[t]-Mex? A detailed, etymological enquiry into the roots of the term "Mexican Standoff."

A quick perusal of the internets this morning reveals this op-ed and this definition--the litany of "Mexican" phrases listed there is useful as well.

No doubt "Mexican Standoff" lurks in the same category with "Indian Giver." It is so ubiquitous that is qualifies as a TV trope, as well!

And, lastly, wearable art has come of it as well:


Ask a Mexican (aka, Gustavo Arellano, aka punk) was spelunking this turf over a year ago! Damned "Mexican"! Here's his skinny:

Dear Mexican: When you strike out four times in a game in baseball, why is it called a golden sombrero?

¡Viva Los Dawyers!

Dear Wab: The why of your question is easy. A hat trick in hockey jargon is when someone scores three goals in a game, so some baseball joker over the years decided to invert the colloquialism to honor a player's embarrassing four-strikeout day at the plate. The choice of words follows logic: The next step beyond a mere hat is a sombrero, and the "golden" is tacked on for ironic purposes.

But the more interesting part of your question, ¡Viva!: Who created the term, and when did it first occur? The 1999 Dickson Baseball Dictionary cites the earliest use of "golden sombrero" in the 1989 autobiography of former Chicago Cubs manager Don Baylor. But a June 16, 1987, Associated Press dispatch quotes then-Cincinnati Reds manager Pete Rose as saying, "We had two guys who got the 'Golden Sombrero' tonight. You know what the Golden Sombrero is, don't you? It's the hat trick plus one." Rose's quip suggests that "golden sombrero" was already popular in big-league clubhouses during the 1980s, but probably no earlier than that--the 1989 edition of the Dickson Baseball Dictionary doesn't list it, while the 1999 paperback version does.

FYI: The Mexican initially leaned toward classifying "golden sombrero" as yet more proof of baseball bigotry against Mexicans, since the sport abounds in negative Mexican-themed terms: Others include a Mexican standoff (used for matchups where nothing ultimately happens) and the Mendoza line, named after Mexican big-league shortstop Mario Mendoza and referring to the mediocre .200 batting average all batters wants to avoid. Ultimately, I decided against the race card: Really, is there a bigger hat out there than the Mexican sombrero? Maybe the cornette associated with the Daughters of Charity, but those nuns stopped using them around the time Sally Field hit the wall. Thus, the sombrero.

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