Elizabeth Vergara L&S Arts & Humanities
Ana Castillos Black Dove: A Re-interpretation of Paloma Negra
This project interrogates narratology’s semiotic scope by decolonizing the various theories from a colonial perspective and exploring historical and cultural dynamics in Chicanx narratives. Through a close reading of Ana Castillo’s memoir Black Dove, I will contribute to existing literature concerning Chicanx narratives and Mexican ballads by deconstructing narrative theory and introducing a historically and culturally relevant perspective that offers an informed understanding of time and place into an analysis of how Chicanx narratives may work out the dynamics of Chicanx identity. I will conduct a comparative analysis of Castillo’s Black Dove with Mexico’s classic song “Paloma Negra” (Black Dove) to demonstrate how race and gender may continue to shape and reshape symbolic figures in narratives. This study exposes the urgency of research in Chicanx literature as narratology’s limited scope contributes to the erasure of Chicanx voices in literary conversation. My project will demonstrate to contemporary readers how Chicanx narrative formations may transform traditional symbolic figures, while critiquing the repression of women’s voices in Mexican ballads and literature.