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Había una vez y dos son tres:
Hispanic Children's Literature in the U.S.

Curated by Ina Rimpau
Second Floor Gallery
September 16 - December 31, 1999

Do you know the words to "De Colores"? Who are your favorite Hispanic authors? What does a vejigante look like? Which adivinanzas and riddles do you know? Where can you find websites for Spanish-speaking children? Visit the Newark Public Library during its Hispanic Heritage Celebration, September 16 to December 31, 1999 to find out!
Me Llamo María Isabel
by Alma Flor Ada, illustrated by K. Dyble Thompson
Bastante grande = Big Enough
by Ofelia Dumas Lachtman, illustrated by Enrique O. Sánchez
The focus of the exhibit is Hispanic children's literature in the US. Join us as we compare creation myths and legends; discover present-day Latino authors and illustrators; explore traditions from the different regions of Latin America; guess at riddles and learn rhymes and poetry; and speculate on how the Internet is changing writing for, about and by Hispanic children. From Victoriana to Cyberspace, the range of what has been published and read is rich and diverse, expressed in a multitude of cultures, customs and media.
Great writers, young readers - Grandes escritores, pequeños lectores

The history of Hispanic children's literature in the U.S. begins in 1889 with the publication of the journal La Edad de Oro in New York City by José Martí, the renowned Cuban nationalist writer. Cuban independence was not a subject of this children's journal, however; the stories are typical Victorian children's literature, with fiction emphasizing traditional values such as obedience to one's parents, and educational articles on Mexican ruins, Buddhism and animist religions, and famous European writers, painters, and musicians. Only four issues were published.

Los Espíritus de mi Tia Otilia = My Aunt Otilia's Spirits
by Richard García, illustrated by Robin Cherin and Roger I. Reyes
Grillos Y Ranas = Crickets and Frogs
A Fable by Gabriela Mistral, translated and adapted by Doris Dana, illustrated by Antonio Frasconi
Legends and folktales - Leyendas y cuentos folklóricos

All the peoples of the earth have their own versions of how they, the earth and the heavens were created. Legends were a way for people to explain natural phenomena, and to let them believe they had some control over them.

Riddles, poetry and songs - Advinanzas, poemas y canciones

Fingerplays and rhymes are our introductions to stories. All over the world, people do fingerplays with very small children, who love the repetition and anticipation. Spanish folk songs and nursery rhymes describe the colors, sights and sounds of growing up in Latin America.

De Colores and Other Latin-American Folk Songs for Children
Selected, arranged, and translated by José-Luis Aozco, illustrated by Elisa Klevenv
Salsa
by Lillian Colón-Vilá, illustrated by Roberta Collier-Morales
Let's celebrate - ¡Celebremos!

Some celebrations mark religious holidays, others the seasons, and still others milestones in people's lives such as births, weddings and funerals. Sometimes even towns have their own special traditions.

Back Home - En Nuestros Países

Hispanic children live on both the American continents. Although they have Hispanic culture in common, their lives can be very different.

Como en Mi Tierra = Just Like Home
by Elizabeth I. Miller, translated by Teresa Mlawer, illustrated by Mira Reisberg
Tomando partido = Taking Sides
by Gary Soto, translated by Ángel Llorente, illustrations by Felipe Ugalde
Telling our own stories - Contando nuestros propios cuentos

Which Hispanic authors and illustrators do you know? Some write in Spanish, some in English; all describe the Latino experience in the U.S. Much recent publishing focuses on the challenges and difficulties of assimilation, immigration both legal and illegal, as well as universal experiences of growing up.

Chato y su Cena was a controversial publication because it was felt by some that it fostered stereotypes of Latinos as gang members. Susan Guevara, was, however, given the 1996 Pura Belpré award for art for her witty, affectionate, vibrant illustrations of acclaimed Mexican-American writer Gary Soto's story.
Chato Y Su Cena
by Gary Soto, translated by Alma Flor Ada y F. Isabel Campoy

Yo Tenía un Hipopótamo
by Héctor Viveros Lee

 

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