Books Acquired Recently: Holiday Gifts Edition

Another holiday season has come and gone, and once again I received a decent number of books as gifts. I also received some cash that I am going to spend at the MLA book fair in Seattle next week. With one exception, the books are either queer or Mennonite, my two main reading areas, and Rodríguez and Sánchez Korrol’s book relates to my recent research on my Puerto Rican heritage.

Dueck, Dora. All That Belongs. Winnipeg: Turnstone Press, 2019.

Rodríguez, Clara E., and Virginia Sánchez Korrol, eds. Historical Perspectives on Puerto Rican Survival in the United States. Princeton, NJ: Markus Wiener Publishers, 1996.

Sachdeva, Anjali. All the Names They Used for God: Stories. New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2019.

Swartz, Phyllis Miller. Yoder School: A Memoir. Telford, PA: DreamSeeker Books, 2019.

Tobia, Jacob. Sissy: A Coming-of-gender Story. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2019.

Warren, Nagueyalti. Alice Walker’s Metaphysics: Literature of Spirit. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2019.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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