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Américo Paredes

Culture and Critique

By José E. Limón

Publication Year: 2012

A rich critical study of the literary legacies bestowed by the late Américo Paredes (1915–1999), and the intellectual paths he created as a distinguished folklore scholar and one of the forebears of Mexican American Studies.

Published by: University of Texas Press

Series: Jack and Doris Smothers Series in Texas History, Life, and Culture

Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. vii

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pp. ix-x

The writing of this book would not have been possible without a 2009–2010 Faculty Fellowship from the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Texas at Austin. My thanks to Dean Randy Diehl and Senior Associate Dean...

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pp. 1-8

Américo Paredes (1915–1999) became and continues to be the foremost U.S. literary and cultural studies intellectual of Mexican ancestry, a figure who focused his creative and scholarly efforts largely on the cultures and peoples...

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1. Radical Hope

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pp. 9-35

According to literary historian John- Michael Rivera, in 1845, on the eve of a momentous shift in the histories of both Mexico and the United States, John O’Sullivan, the American editor and founder of the...

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2. Asian Américo

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pp. 36-71

Having written George Washington Gómez, and somewhat like Guálinto, Américo Paredes left the Lower Rio Grande Valley in late 1944 to serve in the U.S. Army during World War II. By the time his training was over...

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3. The Folklorist

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pp. 72-99

After his years in Asia, Américo Paredes returned to the United States in 1950, principally to resume a college career that he had left off after two years of community college in Brownsville, Texas, before the war...

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4. Cultural Studies

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pp. 100-132

In the preceding chapter we closely examined Paredes’s academic work within the professional discipline of folklore. Indeed, one can make the further argument that this body of work appeared at a historical time in the late 1950s into the late seventies...

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5. Tracking Culture

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pp. 133-160

Contemporary cultural studies has largely overlooked the domain of folklore, or what in the preceding chapter I have also called “the poetics of everyday life.” That the Birmingham School did so, and that its American practitioners...

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6. Valor Civil

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pp. 161-186

We have come to know Américo Paredes as a creative writer; a journalist, largely in Asia; an academic folklorist; a progenitor of cultural studies with its dual beginnings in the interesting year of 1958; and, through his writing...

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pp. 187-192

Acorrido such as that of Gregorio Cortez often ends with a verse of farewell—in Spanish, a despedida—sometimes implied and sometimes with the literal word enunciated. I have not written a corrido here, but as I take leave...


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pp. 193-208


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pp. 209-222


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pp. 223-235

E-ISBN-13: 9780292738782
E-ISBN-10: 0292738781
Print-ISBN-13: 9780292738775
Print-ISBN-10: 0292738773

Page Count: 247
Illustrations: none
Publication Year: 2012

Series Title: Jack and Doris Smothers Series in Texas History, Life, and Culture