The Voice of A Chicana
SPEAKING FOR THE PEOPLE
Gloria Anzaldua (1942-2004)
To live in the Borderlands means knowing
that the india in you, betrayed for 500 years,
is no longer speaking to you,
that mexicanas call you rajetas,
that denying the Anglo inside you
is as bad as having denied the Indian or Black;
Cuando vives in la frontera
people walk through you, the wind steals your voice,
you’re a burra, buey, scapegoat,
forerunner of a new race,
half and half—both woman and man, neither—
a new gender;
To live in the Borderlands means to
put chile in the borscht,
eat whole wheat tortillas,
speak Tex-Mex with a Brooklyn accent;
be stopped by la migra at the border checkpoints;
Living in the Borderlands means you fight hard to
resist the gold elixir beckoning from the bottle,
the pull of the gun barrel,
the rope crushing the hollow of your throat;
In the Borderlands
you are the battleground
where enemies are kin to each other;
you are at home, a stranger,
the border disputes have been settled
the volley of shots have shattered the truce
you are wounded, lost in action
dead, fighting back;
To live in the Borderlands means
the mill with the razor white teeth wants to shred off
your olive-red skin, crush out the kernel, your heart
pound you pinch you roll you out
smelling like white bread but dead;
To survive the Borderlands
you must live sin fronteras
be a crossroads.
P- It explains the struggles of being defined with two identities as both Mexican and American.
C- "the mexicanas call you rajetas" - Literally meaning split referring to their identity not being authentic.
A- Confused on which side will accept you.
S- Goes back and forth from the differences in their lifestyle as a Mexican and American.
T- The experiences of coming from Mexico and adapting to their new American life.
T- Chicanos experience the differences of living with two different cultures.
Viva La Mujer
Has both factors that Gloria was passionate about: the Chicano movement and women's rights.
The American flag with the Mexican flag's colors shows the unity that defines who she is.
La Virgen De Guadalupe
Has both aspects of Mexican-American culture.