preview

Gloria Anzaldua's Borderlands

Good Essays
In her novel Borderlands, Gloria Anzaldua explores the nuances and complications that come with being a member of the Mexican-American community. Her physical home is the border between Mexico and the United States, but she acknowledges that the “psychological borderlands, the sexual borderlands and the spiritual borderlands are not particular to the Southwest” (Anzaldua 19). “In fact,” she continues, “the Borderlands are physically present wherever two or more cultures edge each other…”(Anzaldua 19). Such is the focus of her text, the often uncomfortable meeting space between mainstream white culture in the United States and the indigenous culture of Mexico. The clashing of these two civilizations is personified in the mestizas, people born of both the United States and Mexico, of which Anzaldua is one. The novel presents readers with the often unheard side of a well-known story: the mestiza’s point of view on the issue of the U.S./Mexico border, as well as their struggle to form an identity when they partially belong to…show more content…
She writes in her conclusion to the preface, “We Chicanos no longer feel that we need to beg entrance, that we need always to make the first overture—to translate to Anglos, Mexicans and Latinos, apology blurting out of our mouths with every step. Today we ask to be met halfway” (Anzaldua 20). In Borderlands, it is clear that language plays such a huge role throughout the entirety of the novel because Anzaldua believes that one of the keys to accepting a culture is accepting its language. She makes it clear that she knows the Chicano language is a considered to be a bastard in comparison with its more legitimized siblings, such as American English, or Castilian Spanish, or even Tex-Mex, and yet she peppers her novel with Chicano slang anyway. Borderlands is a forced reckoning between the Chicano community and those who chose to ostracize
Get Access