The Woman Who Knows Latin (Inglés)

By | 1 March 2004

I think there are several reasons for this discrepancy. One is the Catholic church’s teaching that suicide is a sin. People may think they are defending Castellanos from being labeled a sinner. Another is our society’s unease with the expression of “women’s issues” in any public sphere. Rosario’s sufferings had an integral element of gender, they were the sufferings of a woman, in many cases precisely about being a woman.

As I continued to read I started to realize: What people say and believe about women can get into their system to such a point that no intellectual effort can get it out. Maybe not all women, but some, including some of the most brilliant. They can die of it: words can kill.

And that started me worrying about our daughters.


*There are two poems called “Destino”. The first line of this one is: “Matamos lo que amamos. Lo demás.”

Thanks to: Martha Cerda, for good advice and for sending me some books which are very difficult to obtain, also to Nicholas Patricca, Sareda Milosz, Víctor Sahuatoba, Robert Colucci, Pat Hirschl and Elizabeth Starcevic.

Castellanos, Rosario, Bella dama sin piedad, (anthology of poetry) Fondo de Cultura Económica, México, 1984.
Castellanos, Rosario, Mujer que sabe latín, Editorial SEP Diana, México, 1979.
Castellanos, Rosario, Los convidados de agosto, Biblioteca Era, México, 1964
Castellanos, Rosario, El mar y sus pescaditos, Editores Mexicanos Unidos, México, 1982
Castellanos, Rosario, Balún-Canán, Fondo de Cultura Económica, México, 1957
Castellanos, Rosario, Albúm de familia, Joaquín Mortíz, México, 1971
Castellanos, Rosario, Lamentación de Dido, thanks to Víctor Sahuatoba.
Schwartz, Perla, El quebranto del silencio, Editorial Diana, México, 1989.
Schwartz, Perla, Rosario Castellanos, mujer que supo latín, Editorial Katún, México, 1984.
Enciclopedia Hispánica
Various internet sites, especially Columbia University, New York.

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