Poeta en San Francisco. By Barbara Jane Reyes Published by TinFish Press 2008. r e • orient. to orient again or anew. to adjust or align (something) in a new or different way. [ Uyayi ]
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By Barbara Jane Reyes
Published by TinFish Press 2008
Throughout [re • orient] we noticed several different modes through which identities are forged:
2. Outward Appearance
3. Culture of food (particularly in [dis • orient])
6. Others?? Open to classmates, lets keep an eye out in the next poems.
1. Language – contributes to shaping one’s identity by linking (or separating) the individual to a particular linguistic group
Examples in “Confession(al):
-the speaker’s English proficiency
-lack of accent/ desire for an accent
-slang used to reduce the speaker to a “hispanic hussy” or a “slanty-eyed ho’”
2. Outward appearance- a person can project a particular image by choice of dress, but natural physical features can identify one to a particular group beyond the person’s control.
-The coconut metaphor (racialized)
4. Persona- one’s identity may develop as a result of naming / renaming.
-Government recognized names (formal names)
Vs. self-generated nicknames
Example in “[Filipino Names]”:
“Tito Doming the sea captain is Dominador, / And Gerardo Salvador Lantoria III, MD, / Former lead guitarist of the metal band Leper Messiah, / Is, and always shall be Thirdyboy” (101).
5. Geography- Just as regions are outlined and ascribed a name or an identity, that naming is extended to its inhabitants.
How does Reyes challenge space/identity affiliations in Poeta en San Francisco?
-Geography and body as sites of cultural collision
(Credit to Craig Perez, excerpted from his review of Poeta en San Francisco, Winter 2006/2007, http://www.raintaxi.com/online/2006winter/reyes.shtml)
The shifting of styles from story-telling to epistolary to rap-like slam poetry to prayer disorders the impression of a unified voice. Is this true? What’s accomplished by this style?