AND THE REINVENTION OF AMERICA
September 25, 2002
University of Houston Hilton, Waldorf Ballroom
from the event | Streaming Video from the event (coming soon)
Richard Rodriguez is one of our country's most perceptive commentators
about ethnicity, race and class. With the publication of Brown:
The Last Discovery of America, he completes his trilogy on American
public life that he began with the highly acclaimed memoirs Hunger
of Memory (1982) and Days of Obligation: An Argument with My Mexican
Father (1992). In Brown, he argues that Hispanics are coloring
an American identity that traditionally has chosen to describe
itself as black and white. The New Yorker praises his work, calling
him a writer of unusual grace and clarity, eloquent in all
his reflections...He speaks with authority, in a voice of true
clarity, and it is impossible to doubt him.
son of Mexican immigrants, Rodriguez was born in 1944 in San Francisco.
He primarily spoke Spanish until he entered school at the age
of six and his memoir Hunger of Memory describes how English language
instruction distanced him from his parents native culture.
The book is assigned widely in high school and college courses,
and has achieved contemporary classic status despite its opposition
to two programs many educators usually hold dearaffirmative
action and bilingual education.
went on to earn his Bachelors Degree from Stanford University
and his Ph.D. in English Renaissance Literature from UC Berkeley.
His second book, Days of Obligation, was a Pulitzer Prize finalist
in 1993. In a series of essays it examines what it means to be
Mexican/American, beginning with the 16th century meetings of
the conquistadors and Aztecs and moving forward to modern San
Francisco as it confronts the plague of AIDS.
addition to his writing, Rodriguez works as an editor at Pacific
News Service. His insightful commentaries on the NewsHour with
Jim Lehrer won him a Peabody Award. He is a contributing editor
for both Harpers Magazine and the Opinion section
of the Los Angeles Times. The Village Voice names Rodriguez the
best American essayist...[He] doesnt kowtow to political
correctness. He shuns the pack, rides alone. He writes a lonely
line of individualism, the grandeur and grief of the American
Project for the Active Teaching of History
by a major grant from the U.S. Department of Education, PATH seeks
enhance the teaching of American history throughout the Gulf Coast
region. A joint project of Region 4 Education Service Center, the
of Houston Department of History and College of Education, and the
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, PATH will host a series of summer seminars
teachers and colloquia for the general public.
additional information: Please contact Debra Williams, Education
in Science/Social Studies Services at Region 4 Education
Service Center, 713-744-6846 or firstname.lastname@example.org