In the Name of Salome is Kindle Everything of ours from lives to literature has always been so disposable she thinks It is as if a little stopper that has contained years of bitterness ins
In the Name of Salome is Kindle Everything of ours--from lives to literature--has always been so disposable, she thinks. It is as if a little stopper that has contained years of bitterness inside her has been pulled out. She smells her anger--it has a metallic smell mixed in with earth, a rusting plow driven into the ground. Around 1844, the Dominican Independence War gave the Dominican Republic freedom from Haiti. Years later, the Dominican President would turn the country over to Spanish rule. Disorder was inevitable. A revolution to save la patria ensued. This forms the backdrop for this book of historical fiction about family; how each generation is affected by the choices and lives of the ones before it.Just as song unchains the soul, so does poetry. Poetry is song. Verse is liberation. Tears are the ink of the poet.At the center of it all, is the young poet, Salomé.It was time for poetry, even if it was not the time for liberty. Sometimes I wondered if this didn't make sense after all. The spirit needed to soar when the body was in chains.Imagine poetry as the voice of liberty. Salomé Ureña was a pioneer of poetry in the Dominican Republic during the 1870s. At a time when women were not trained to read or write, she was publishing poems at age seventeen, and later, she would open the first center of higher education for young women in the Dominican Republic. The fictional character in this book takes her bearings from this feminist hero. There is only one way to make it stop, a way which Papa has been trying to teach me, and that is to sit down and think of the words for it all, then write them up the verses my mother copies neatly into her letters to my father.Salomé's daughter, a college professor, pays homage to her mother's work and life through the present narration. But oh how I wish the young Salomé had been the narrator. How I wish the breaks and intersections of the narration had disappeared through Salomé's recount of Cuba's fight for independence, Santa Domingo's fight for liberty, the women's movement of that time, the fight against censorship…How I wish I had learned about these important time fractions through a more cohesive structure, minus the fragments of time, place and space. How I look forward to reading, In The Time Of Butterflies for a firmer grasp of that place and time.. The Barnes Noble Review La Musa de la Patria In recent years, novelists Mona Simpson Anywhere But Here , Karla Kuban Marchlands and Susannah Moore My Old Sweetheart , among numerous others, have memorably explored the mother daughter relationship, showing us the conflicted, often painful intersections of the lives of their multigenerational characters But inThe Barnes Noble Review La Musa de la Patria In recent years, novelists Mona Simpson Anywhere But Here , Karla Kuban Marchlands and Susannah Moore My Old Sweetheart , among numerous others, have memorably explored the mother daughter relationship, showing us the conflicted, often painful intersections of the lives of their multigenerational characters But in Julia Alvarez s new novel, In the Name of Salome, the mother, Dominican poet and political muse Salom Ure a, only lives long enough to hear her three year old daughter Camila recite one of her consumptive mother s poems What we get, then, is a compelling work of fiction based on remarkably tireless research and shaped by Camila s reach into the past, into her mother s history and her mother s place in history, in order to make sense of the choices she has made about her own A masterful manipulator of time, Alvarez alternates points of view, shuttling us not only back and forth between Salom and Camila, but also moving us forward in Salome s life as she moves us backward in Camila s Salom writes in secret as a child, publishes briefly under a pseudonym and soon emerges as herself, a figure of inspiration for a nation But all the while she longs for that other kind of passion, the one her family and her readers would like to believe she is above the passionate love of a man Sadly, though she finds that love in Papancho, he is never fully hers He belongs in turn to his country, to his studies, and inevitably to another woman How Salom withstands losing this managain andagain has to do with what we all withstand wisely and unwisely in the name of love Camila writes poetry only as a mature woman As a child her life is shaped by the political values that shape Papancho s life Those values find only cautious expression in the U.S where she studies at the University of Minnesota and later becomes a professor at Vassar But in Cuba, where she spends the last 13 years of her life, she fulfills the dream of both her mother and father as a vital and dedicated participant in Fidel Castro s revolutionary experiment Through skillful mechanics Alvarez makes characters of time itself and the history that marks it And what troubling history it is, spanning over 100 years 1856 1973 in the life of the Dominican Republic, where the government changes hands with as much frequency as a se orita changes her linens, and Depending on the president, the pantheon of heroes changes, one regime s villain is the next one s hero, until the word hero, like the word patria, begins to mean nothing But if history renders language meaningless, what is left Only the struggle to make meaning, and only love makes that struggle real and worthwhile on this matter mother and daughter agree So this is also a love story, in which Salom discovers that she will give up everything her writing, her social activism, finally her health for the man she loves, and Camilla discovers that she will sacrifice her secure teaching position in the U.S the approval of family, friends and erstwhile lovers for the very thing her mother s passionate poetry taught her love for the land and the people who give life to it Alvarez s skillful prose styling distinguishes the two women not only through the details of their lives but also through their meticulously wrought voices Moreover, just as interesting as what distinguishes them from one another is what unites them the pull of public life on their private lives and the challenges presented by the conventions that govern their lives as women And they and we thrill equally to the ultimate discovery we re all reaching for, that hushed and holy momentwhen the word becomes flesh In a book rich in extended metaphor, where poetry and idealism play a huge role, we are never encumbered with abstraction This is a writer going at full tilt wry, wise, ironic, forgiving She, like both the women of this novel, is an educator, though neither didactic nor condescending Even though we know from the beginning the details about the end of both mother s and daughter s lives, Alvarez manages to sustain an air of suspense throughout, the point being not what happens, but how it comes about, and at what cost Susan Thames is the author of a book of short stories, AS MUCH AS I KNOW Her novel I ll Be Home Late Tonight was a Barnes Noble Discover Great New Writers selection.. The best Kindle In the Name of Salome I love Julie Alvarez! She develops her characters so so well you want to know what happens to them and then don't want to story to end.review by Debbis Lee Wesselman: "This deeply imaginative portrait of the Dominican poet Salome Urena and her daughter Camila captures the people behind the revolutions in the Dominican Republic and Cuba without idealizing them, without relegating them to mouths spouting political dogma. As Salome says to her young husband when he chides her for writing a non-revolutionary poem, "I am a woman as well as a poet." This is exactly what Alvarez accomplishes: an adept melding of the public and private sides of her characters to give her book real heart.This novel spans over a hundred years, from the 1850's (the beginning of Salome's story) to the 1970's (the end of Camila's story.) Because the two stories are interspersed and are not told chronologically, the time and place can sometimes be confusing despite the chapter headings meant to give the reader his bearings. Don't let this frustrate you; the story is well worth this flaw. My advice is just to give yourself up to Alvarez's skill and let her take you where she wants."
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