Guadalupe in Unexpected Places

August 11, 2009 at 9:04 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

So I am speeding through this week’s New York Times Book Review (8/9/09), and there, at the end of a piece on books about “revolutionary visuals” appears an ad I hadn’t anticipated. It’s advertising a new book from Doubleday, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mother of the Civilization of Love. 

Perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised. New York, after all, has long been home to a large Latino community, including an increasing number of Chicanos. And home for more than a century to many other kinds of Catholics as well: Guadalupe, Our Lady of the Americas, belongs to us all. 

But the ad does seem to have a particular slant: the second author is identified, not with his first name, but with his title, “Msgr. Lopez.” And the blurb at the bottom of the ad is from none other than Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput, the somewhat-less-than-progressive Archbishop of Denver. What’s going to turn up next in the “liberal media”?

The cover of the book is attractive, and you can even get Our Lady of Guadalupe as an ebook, though for the same price as the hardback, $22.99. (Doubleday may need to chat with Amazon about this.)

Myself, I’m holding out for another book on Guadalupe to be published soon by NYU Press. Written by the CUNY anthropologist, Alyshia Galvez, In the Name of Guadalupe: Religion, Politics and Citizenship among Mexicans in New York is a study of Mexican immigrants around the city who translate their devotion to Guadalupe into the political activism with which they challenge exclusionary notions of citizenship. The chapter I read was galvanizing. I’ll keep you posted.

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