Cover image for Hispanic literature of the United States : a comprehensive reference
Hispanic literature of the United States : a comprehensive reference
Kanellos, Nicolás.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Westport, Conn. : Greenwood Press, [2003]

Physical Description:
314 pages : illustrations ; 27 cm
General Note:
"An Oryx book."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PS153.H56 K36 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



Providing a detailed historical overview of Hispanic literature in the United States from the Spanish colonial period to the present, this extensive chronology provides the context within which such writers as Sandra Cisneros, Rodolfo Anaya, and Oscar Hijuelos have worked.

Hispanic literature in the United States is covered from the Spanish colonial period to the present. A detailed historical overview and a separate survey of Hispanic drama provide researchers and general readers with indispensable information and insight into Hispanic literature. An extensive chronology traces the development of Hispanic literature and culture in the United States from 1492 to 2002, providing the context within which such Hispanic writers such as Sandra Cisneros, Rodolfo Anaya, and Oscar Hijuelos have worked. Topics include an overview and chronology of Hispanic literature in the United States, a who's who of Hispanic authors, significant trends, movements, and themes, publishing trends, an overview of Hispanic drama, adn the 100 essential Hispanic literary works.

Biographical entries describe the careers, importance, and major works of notable Hispanic novelists, poets, and playwrights writing in English or Spanish. A comprehensive, up-to-date bibliography lists primary sources. Essays detail the most important past and current trends in Hispanic literature, including bilingualism, Chicano literature, children's literature, exile literature, folklore, immigrant literature, Nuyorican literature, poetry, and women and feminism in Hispanic literature. More than 100 exceptional illustrations of writers, plays in performance, and first editions of important works are included.

Author Notes

NICOLÁS KANELLOS is the Brown Foundation Professor of Spanish at the University of Houston. Recognized for his scholarly achievements, Dr. Kanellos is the recipient of the 1996 Denali Press Award of the American Library Association, the 1989 American Book Award-Publisher/Editor Category, the 1989 award from the Texas Association of Chicanos in Higher Education, the 1988 Hispanic Heritage Award for Literature presented by the White House, as well as various fellowships and other recognitions. Dr. Kanellos is the director of a major national research program, Recovering the U.S. Hispanic Literary Heritage of the United States, whose objective is to identify, preserve, study, and make accessible tens of thousands of literary documents of those regions that have become the United States from the colonial period to 1960. In 1994 President Bill Clinton appointed Dr. Kanellos to the National Council on the Humanities.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

This work by Kanellos, professor of Hispanic and classical languages at the University of Houston, is a welcome addition to the numerous reference books on the literature of the diverse populations of the U.S. It is much more than a who's who of Hispanic literature. Spain was the first nation to introduce a written European language to the mainland of what would become the U.S., and coverage begins with a detailed, readable overview of the records of Ponce de Leon's exploration of Florida in the early sixteenth century. The overview chapter ends with a bibliography for further reading. The chronology that follows begins in 1492 with the arrival of Columbus and traces the development of Hispanic literature and culture to 2002. The bulk of the text is taken up by the chapter Who's Who of Hispanic Authors of the United States, which consists of alphabetical entries, between 150 and 500 words in length, for more than 100 authors. Succeeding chapters discuss Significant Trends, Movements, and Themes (for example, the Nuyorican poets, indigenous writings, and immigration) and Publishing Trends. This chapter is particularly enlightening as it discusses Spanish-language newspapers from all of the states with large Hispanic populations and the small presses that were significant in the careers of such luminaries as Sandra Cisneros and Ana Castillo. A chapter specifically detailing the history of Hispanic drama is also included. Students, faculty, and collection development librarians will appreciate the list of 100 Essential Hispanic Literary Works and the select bibliography. Title and subject indexes complete the work, which is recommended for public, high-school, and undergraduate collections. -- RBB Copyright 2004 Booklist

Library Journal Review

These two volumes both treat Latino (or Hispanic) literature in the United States. Edited by Kevane (Spanish, Montana State Univ., Bozeman; coeditor, Latina Self-Portraits), Latino Literature in America features eight prominent authors-Julia Alvarez, Rudolfo Anaya, Sandra Cisneros, Junot Diaz, Oscar Hijuelos, Judith Ortiz Cofer, Cristina Garcia, and Ernesto Quinonez-who were each chosen to represent a different Latino culture. Excellent biographical and critical information is provided, but the omission of many other Latino authors diminishes the book's value as an overview of Latino literature in the United States. Certainly, more thorough works on Latino authors are available (e.g., Latino and Latina Writers, edited by Alan West-Duran, and Frances Ann Day's Latina and Latino Voices in Literature). Kevane's ambition to reflect cultural concerns through the literature of specific locales is not unworthy, but the possibilities go way beyond the limited number of examples here. Recommended as a resource on these authors only, not as an overview or anthology of Latino literature. In contrast, Hispanic Literature of the United States is as an excellent source on the history of Hispanic literature in the United States. The prolific Kanellos (e.g., Hispanic-American Literature; The Hispanic American Almanac) connects historical events in the Americas with social trends and movements affecting Hispanics and Hispanic literature. In addition, a detailed chronology lists key events in Hispanic literature and culture. As a result, readers come to understand the political and social arenas in which Hispanic writers have had to contend. Kanellos also offers a "Who's Who of Hispanic Authors of the United States," which features brief biographies of over 160 authors of the 19th and 20th centuries, and devotes a large section to publishing history and current trends. A canon of 100 essential literary works by Hispanic authors completes this thorough, well-documented resource. There are a few disappointing omissions, e.g., only drama gets its own chapter, though the preface states that poetry and the novel will also be given independent treatment. As a whole, however, this work does not fail to deliver vital information. This text will serve as a good starting point for the study of Hispanic literature in most academic libraries and will be a standard reference tool in large public libraries and any public library with much patronage from the Latino community.-Nedra Crowe-Evers, Sacramento P.L., CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Publisher, editor, and writer Kanellos, well-known for his groundbreaking work in US Latino literature and drama, founded both the premier Latino literary journal Americas Review (1986-99) and Arte Publico Press (one of the most important and prolific publishers of Latino literature), and directs the Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Project. Since the late 1980s, Kanellos has written a number of essential, award-winning reference sources about Latinos. In this source, like many of his previous reference works, the author organizes material into highly readable chapters that provide historical overviews; a chronology; essays on important Latino literary movements, themes, and publishing trends; and more than 150 biographical entries ranging in length from one to several paragraphs. He includes numerous illustrations, a list of "100 Essential Hispanic Literary Works," and a select bibliography. Other recent titles, like the excellent Latino and Latina Writers, ed. by Alan West-Duran (2v., CH, May'04), cover a core group of contemporary Mexican American, Puerto Rican, and Cuban American authors. Kanellos is more inclusive, focusing on the achievements and literary output of Latinos from these three largest groups, but including information about authors from many other US Latino groups--Dominicans, Hondurans, Colombians, Nicaraguans, and others residing in the US, 19th century to the present. This unequalled breadth, along with Kanellos's valuable contextual and historical information, make a valuable contribution to Latino history and literary studies. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. All collections. S. A. Vega Garcia Iowa State University

Table of Contents

Overview of Hispanic Literature of the United States
Chronology of Hispanic Literature and Culture in the United States
Who's Who of Hispanic Authors of the United States Significant Trends
Movements, and Themes in Hispanic Literature of the United States
Publishing Trends Overview of Hispanic Drama 100 Essential Hispanic
Literary Works
Bibliography Title
Index Subject