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The rag doll plagues

Morales, Alejandro

143 valoraciones por Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1558850368 / ISBN 13: 9781558850361
Editorial: Arte Publico Press, Houston, 1992
Encuadernación de tapa dura
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199p., personal inscription signed by the author, very good first edition in cloth boards and unclipped dj. Fifth novel by the Chicano novelist concerns a Spanish doctor in colonial Mexico fighting a plague and a modern Chicano doctor fighting AIDS in California. N° de ref. de la librería 10316

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Detalles bibliográficos

Título: The rag doll plagues

Editorial: Arte Publico Press, Houston

Año de publicación: 1992

Encuadernación: Hardcover

Condición de la sobrecubierta: Dust Jacket Included

Ejemplar firmado: Signed by Author(s)

Edición: 1st Edition

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A mysterious plague is decimating the population of colonial Mexico. One of His Majesty's highest physicians is dispatched from Spain to bring the latest advances in medical science to the backward peoples of the New World capital. Here begins the cyclical tale of man battling the unknown, of science confronting the eternally indifferent forces of nature.

Morales takes us on a trip through ancient and future civilizations, through exotic but all-too-familiar cultures, to a final confrontation with our own ethics and world views. In later chapters, the colonial physician finds his successors as they once again engage in life or death struggles, attempting to balance their own hopes, desires and loves with the good society and the state. Book II of the novel takes place in modern-day southern California, and Book III in a futuristic technocratic confederation known as Lamex.

In the tradition of Latin American born novelist, Alejandro Morales is one of the finest representatives of magic realism in the English language. In The Rag Doll Plague, Morales creates a many layered fictional world, taking us on an entertaining and thought-provoking safari thorough lands, times, peoples and ideas never before encountered or presented in this manner. But ultimately, this valuable trip leads to a reacquaintance with our own society and its moral vision.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Swarms of butterflies and hummingbirds, a jaguar on a leash, a hero who's writing himself into existence, beneficent ghosts of ancestors--all the trappings of post-Borges magic realism are gathered in this undeniably derivative and yet often quite funny, quirky meditation on Mexican-American relations, the politics of epidemics and the uses of history. To pack all that into a mere 200 pages, Morales foreshortens, stylizes, and truncates plots and characters, creating a series of rigid allegorical tableaux with the static vitality and crudeness of a barrio mural. In Book One, Dr. Gregorio Revueltas, a physician sent from Spain to Mexico in 1788 (significant date), seeks a cure for a plague ravaging the colony. Spanish oppression of the natives, the Inquisition's persecution of indigenous curanderos, exacerbate the suffering. Only after the outbreak of the French Revolution does the plague, wrought by microbes and compounded by human stupidity, subside. In Book Two, Chicano doctor Revueltas (ca. 1950-85) works in a southern California barrio clinic where violence, drugs, and AIDS are the names of the plague, again both viral and social in its origins. This chapter is the least satisfactory. AIDS is too close and too complex and Morales hasn't thought about it enough. His lack of grounding even in the medical facts undermines his fantasy. Book Three is set in the late 21st- century world of LAMEX, a rigidly stratified hi-tech society that includes both L.A. and Mexico City. The sci-fi social satire is full of vivid scenes and liberating inventions--every pharmacy, for instance, carries the cures for AIDS and cancer. The plague now is environmental. It comes from the sea, and when it strikes, whole cities perish overnight. Another Dr. Revueltas reads his ancestors' plague-year diaries and, fortified by his sense of the past, discovers not only a cure for this plague but a way to turn the social order upside down, putting the poorest Mexicans on top for a while. Morales (The Brick People, Death of an Anglo--both 1988) offers a novel that exhibits the very qualities it celebrates: energy, hopefulness, a reverence for roots. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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