Rudolfo Anaya

Rudolfo Anaya lives and breathes the landscape of the Southwest--it is a powerful force, full of magic and myth, integral to his writings. Anaya, however, is a native Hispanic fascinated by cultural crossings unique to the Southwest, a combination of Old Spain and New Spain, of Mexico with Mesoamerica and the anglicizing forces of the twentieth century. Rudolfo Anaya is widely acclaimed as the founder of modern Chicano literature. According to the New York Times, he is the most widely read author in Hispanic communities, and sales of his classic Bless Me, Ultima (1972) have surpassed 360,000, despite the fact that few of his books were originally published by New York publishing houses. His works are standard texts in Chicano studies and literature courses around the world, and he has done more than perhaps any other single person to promote publication of books by Hispanic authors in this country. With the publication of his novel, Albuquerque (1992),Newsweek proclaimed him a front-runner in "what is better called not the new multicultural writing, but the new American writing." In the mid 1990s, Anaya signed a 5 book contract with Warner books including a mass market reprint of Bless Me, Ultima and a quartet of mysteries featuring detective Sonny Baca. In 2003, he was awarded the National Medal of Arts. 
"I've always used the technique of the cuento. I am an oral storyteller, but now I do it on the printed page. I think if we were very wise we would use that same tradition in video cassettes, in movies, and on radio."
Rudolfo Anaya

Click here to hear Rudolfo Anaya narrating Writing the Southwest.