(Re)Imagining Home Across Borders: The Construction of Selfhood in Sandra Cisneros's "Women Hollering Creek"

Yay İ. C.

LITERA-JOURNAL OF LANGUAGE LITERATURE AND CULTURE STUDIES, vol.27, no.2, pp.1-26, 2017 (Journal Indexed in ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 27 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Doi Number: 10.26557/iulitera.328466
  • Page Numbers: pp.1-26


Since the 1980s, the literary and theoretical output of American women writers of Latin-American heritage has offered an alternative reading of feminist literary tradition. Sandra Cisneros is probably one of the foremost figures within the American context of "Border Literature" and "Borders Studies" proper. This article firstly outlines the parameters, theorems and prominent figures of Border Studies, and then examines Cisneros' short story "Woman Hollering Creek" which deconstructs the dualistic mode of thinking in terms of first world vs. third world dichotomy, and defies various thematic and structural borders. The story is also a parody of the Mexican popular genres of telenovella (soap opera) and fotonovella (photo novel), and offers a new form of identity formation through the female protagonist's quest for finding her own voice and subjectivity outside the prescribed gender roles attuned to the patriarchal discourse proposed in the aforementioned popular genres. Hence, this article offers a close reading of the story's narrative strategies on a linguistic and semantic level as they inform its thematic concerns.