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The class will consist of reading and discussing The Vortex by José Eustasio Rivera (ISBN 9780822371106) Duke University Press (2018), first published in 1928 about dramatic events in Colombia ca. 1900-1920. The Colombian riverine areas were primary sources for the collection of rubber – a needed commodity on world markets. Many people came to Colombia with the idea of exploiting the rubber in the area with cheap labor supplied from the indigenous inhabitants of the area. A fictional individual (Arturo Cava) from the capital of Bogota, ran away accompanied by his girlfriend (Alicia), found out about the exploitation of the inhabitants, and wrote a book publicizing it. It is considered a masterpiece of South American fiction written in modernismo style.
The second book consists of 3 short novels about a fictional country (Mexico perhaps) overrun by drug rings (narcotraficantes) and how the inhabitants of the imaginary country cope with the realities of the author's imaginary world. Three Novels by Yuri Herrera all of which are in one book (ISBN 9781913505240) Kingdom Cons, Signs Preceding the End of the World, The Transmigration of Bodies. One of the stories has been called one of the hundred best of this century by the Guardian newspaper.
Instructor: Charles Peters
Chuck is an experienced study group leader.
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