Simón Bolívar

Of Haiti and Shitholes

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“Attack and Taking of the Crête-à-Pierrot,” 1839. Original illustration by Auguste Raffet, engraving by Hébert. (Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

At Hunt the Devil, we believe that America is not just a country, but rather a continent. We have had occasion in the past to write about Haiti after comments by Pat Robertson in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake (a death toll of 100,000 souls) to the effect that Haiti’s misfortunes throughout history were the result of having sworn a pact with the Devil (see our blog post “Compact with the Devil”).

We have written about Haiti again in a recently published book chapter that looks at Barack Obama’s presidency within the context of the general history of the Americas (see Robert L. Ivie and Oscar Giner, “Barack Obama at the Threshold of a New America,” in Robert E. Terrill, ed. Reconsidering Obama: Reflections on Rhetoric, New York: Peter Lang, 2017).

What follows is a brief excerpt from that publication: (more…)

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Elegy for Gabriel García Márquez

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Gabriel García Márquez by Jose Lara

He died on Holy Thursday (the same day as Ursula Iguarán, one of the mythical founders of Macondo), tormented by mischievous fiends like the ones who possessed the heroine of his Love and Other Demons. Back in Catholic High School, where our instruction (mostly in English) consisted of North American writers, Spanish novelists before the time of Franco, and outdated Latin American novels, Gabriel García Márquez´s One Hundred Years of Solitude entered our consciousness with all the force and violence of a Caribbean hurricane.

For the first time we saw that our reality was not strictly Puerto Rican. We came to the novel late (my battered paper copy from back then belongs to the 16th edition, 1970, of its Buenos Aires publication in 1967). One Hundred Years of Solitude was a rare phenomenon in Latin American literature—a bestseller. The novel confirmed what José Martí had prophesied in his essay Our America (1891): “Whatever remains of village in America will awaken.” We were, and knew ourselves to be from then on, Latin Americans.   (more…)