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Things We Do Not Talk About

Daniel Olivas explores Latino/a literature through essays and interviews in his newest book, published June 1

By LatinoLA Contributor
Published on LatinoLA: May 12, 2014


Things We Do Not Talk About


On June 1, 2014, San Diego State University Press will publish the first non-fiction book by Daniel Olivas called Things We Do Not Talk About: Exploring Latino/a Literature through Essays and Interviews. The volume brings together decade's worth of his essays that have appeared in The New York Times, La Bloga, The Jewish Journal, The Elegant Variation, California Lawyer, and other publications. It also includes 28 interviews that he's conducted over the years with some of our most exciting Latino/a writers including H?ctor Tobar, Sandra Cisneros, Richard Blanco, Luis Alberto Urrea, Helena Mar?a Viramontes, Daniel Alarc??n, and many others. A more complete description of the book appears below.

Things We Do Not Talk About: Exploring Latino/a Literature through Essays and Interviews

By Daniel A. Olivas
Published by San Diego State University Press
ISBN-10:193853705X
ISBN-13:978-1-938537-05-9
Paperback; 218 pp.

In this candid and wide-ranging collection of personal essays and interviews, award-winning author Daniel A. Olivas explores Latino/a literature at the dawn of the 21st century.

While his essays address a broad spectrum of topics from the Mexican-American experience to the Holocaust, Olivas always returns to and wrestles with queries that have no easy answers: How does his identity as a Chicano reflect itself through his writing? What issues and subjects are worth exploring? How do readers react to the final results? Can literature affect political discourse and our daily lives?

Olivas has explored similar questions through almost a decade's worth of interviews with Latino/a authors that have appeared in various online literary publications. While professors and students alike have already relied upon many of the interviews as source material for scholarly examination, twenty-eight of these incisive and frank dialogues are now collected in one volume for the first time. Olivas dives deep to discover how these authors create prose and poetry while juggling families, facing bigotry, struggling with writer's block, and deciphering a fickle publishing industry. This roster of interview subjects is a who's who of contemporary Latino/a literature:

Aaron A. Abeyta Daniel Alarc??n Francisco Arag??n Gustavo Arellano
Gregg Barrios Richard Blanco Margo Candela Susana Ch?vez-Silverman
Sandra Cisneros Carlos E. Cort?s Carmen Gim?nez Smith Ray Gonz?lez
Rigoberto Gonz?lez Octavio Gonz?lez Reyna Grande Myriam Gurba
Rub?n Mart?nez Michael Luis Medrano Aaron Michael Morales Manuel Mu??oz
Salvador Plascencia Sam Quinones Ilan Stavans H?ctor Tobar
Justin Torres Sergio Troncoso Luis Alberto Urrea Helena Mar?a Viramontes

Things We Do Not Talk About will undoubtedly become a natural companion to the study and enjoyment of contemporary Latino/a literature.

DANIEL A. OLIVAS is the author of six books including the award-winning novel, The Book of Want (University of Arizona Press). He is the editor of the landmark anthology, Latinos in Lotusland (Bilingual Press), which brings together sixty years of Los Angeles fiction by Latino/a writers. Widely anthologized, Olivas fiction, poetry and essays have appeared, or are forthcoming, in many literary journals including Exquisite Corpse, PANK, The MacGuffin, PALABRA, New Madrid, Fairy Tale Review, THEMA, LatinoLA, Bilingual Review, and Pembroke. He has also written for The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Jewish Journal, La Bloga, the El Paso Times, and the Los Angeles Review of Books. Olivas earned his degree in English literature from Stanford University, and law degree from UCLA. By day, he is an attorney in the Public Rights Division of the California Department of Justice in Los Angeles.

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