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The Latin Deli: An Ars Poetica Essay

Judith Ortiz Cofer
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In the following review of Ortiz Cofer's The Latin Deli: Prose and Poetry, Kenneth Wishnia states that the writings of Ortiz Cofer "defy convenient classification," though she addresses many common themes of ethnic-American writing, including the various sub-themes of culture clash such as sexuality, mores, and belief systems.

Judith Ortiz Cofer's writing defies convenient classification, although she works with many themes that are common to ethnic-American literature, for example, the feeling of being in exile in a strange land, where the sound of Spoken Spanish is so comforting that even a grocery list reads "like poetry." The daily struggle to consolidate opposing identities is perhaps most clearly exemplified by the tradition which determines that a latina becomes a "woman" at age 15, which means, paradoxically, not more freedom but more restrictions, since womanhood is defined as sexual maturity, which must then be contained at all costs. This leaves...

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This section contains 1,036 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Latin Deli: An Ars Poetica Study Guide
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The Latin Deli: An Ars Poetica from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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