Recent texts in Latinx literature have ghosts that demonstrate new knowledge about history, culture, and subjectivity. In Song of the Water Saints and Soledad, the first novels of authors Nelly Rosario and Angie Cruz, respectively, the figure of the ghost is a trope that imaginatively reconnects communities of women that are fractured by the corruptive influence of the United States and other Western nations in the Latin Caribbean. The ghost of Graciela in Song of the Water Saints and the “living ghost” of Olivia in Soledad allow readers to see how matrilineal bonds in families can be restored. These ties are cut by the prolonged and detrimental exploitation of the Dominican Republic by the United States and more generally the West. With a focus on women, the use of ghosts in these novels attends to the material, historical, and cultural practices between people and the geographies they inhabit.
Ghosts in Nelly Rosario’s Song of the Water Saints and Angie Cruz’s Soledad
Susan C. Méndez is professor in the Department of English and Theatre at the University of Scranton. Many of her courses support the women’s and gender studies and Latin American studies programs. Her publications have appeared in journals such as Centro: Journal of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies, Chicana/Latina Studies, Afro-Hispanic Review, MaComère: The Journal of the Association of Caribbean Women Writers and Scholars, and Label Me Latina/o.
Susan C. Méndez; Ghosts in Nelly Rosario’s Song of the Water Saints and Angie Cruz’s Soledad. Small Axe 1 March 2022; 26 (1 (67)): 16–29. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/07990537-9724023
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