Anthology •  Chicano/a •  Literature •  American West and Cultural Studies

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Hecho en Tejas: An Anthology of Texas Mexican Literature

Edited by Dagoberto Gilb

Winner of a 2007 PEN Texas award for Nonfiction

Once an independent nation, Texas has always been proud of its unique culture. The literature of the Lone Star State has long attracted local, regional, and national audiences and critics, yet the state's Mexican American voices have yet to receive the attention they deserve.

Hecho en Tejas is a historic anthology that establishes the canon of Mexican American literature in Texas. With close to one hundred selections chosen, the book reaches back to the sixteenth-century exploration narrative of Texas's first Spanish-speaking writer, Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca. It features prose by Américo Paredes and Jovita Gonzalez, Rolando Hinojosa and Tomás Rivera, Estela Trambley Portillo, and Sandra Cisneros. Among the poets included in the anthology are Ricardo Sánchez, Carmen Tafolla, Angela de Hoyos, and Abelardo "Lalo" Delgado. Hecho en Tejas also includes corridos from the turn of the century and verses sung by music legends such as Lydia Mendoza and Santiago Jimenez, Sr., Freddy Fender, and Selena. In addition to these established names, already known across the United States, Hecho en Tejas introduces such younger writers as Christine Granados, Erasmo Guerra, and Tonantzin Canestaro-Garcia, the famous Tejano authors of tomorrow.

In assembling this canonic reader, Dagoberto Gilb has created more than an anthology. Read cover to cover, Hecho en Tejas becomes not only a literary showcase, but also a cultural and historical narrative both for those familiar with Texas Mexicans and for outsiders. Hecho en Tejas is a mosaic portrait of the community, the land and its history, its people's sorrows and joys, anger and humor and pride, what has been assimilated and what will not be.


"...the wealth of information, the style and degree of importance placed on each sample of writing, photography, and artistic images found in ( Hecho en Tejas) serves as priceless treasure to be consumed within its own treasure chest...( Hecho en Tejas) is here to stay, hopefully like a seed planted in the feritle minds of its readers."


Newspaper Tree, El Paso

"A prolific and accomplished writer, Gilb presages this unique, lively collection with a unique, jaunty introduction--a fine example of the blend of gravity and levity in Texas Mexican literature...One finds familiar texts and voices, delightful surprising inclusions, and recent voices...Highly recommended."



" Hecho en Tejas at last makes the convincing case that the body of works written by Texans of Mexican descent is neither incidental nor peripheral to Texas literature. This is a masterwork of Texas literature that belongs to all of Texas."


El Paso Times

"...(an) extraordinary book of Texas-Mexican writings...There is an absence in these pages of the pretentious experimentation for its own sake that controls much of American poetry and fiction today."


Dallas Morning News

"...(a) handsome volume...a wide, inclusive and nonjudgmental view of a peculiarly Texas cultural phenomenon with a long history... One could expect that a book like this would open the gates to an increasing and continuous flood of Tejano writing."


San Antonio Express News

"Gilb's anthology boasts a list of truly remakable authors--not just 'Mexican-American' authors but 'authors' without the minority label."


Houston Chronicle

"This anthology shatters stereotypes, offers insightful historical and cultural reflections and showcases Tejano writers, some very much alive and mostly of the 20th century."


Fort Worth Star Telegram

"...breaks new ground on the old battlefields of race, culture, language, and genre."


San Antonio Current

" extraordinary collection.... Hecho en Tejas shows the richness of the Tejano literary culture."


East Texas Historical Association

"...Gilb's anthology invitingly and officially allows us all to join him as we go 'Onward y adelante!' It's about time."


Southwestern American Literature

" Hecho en Tejas is a triumph."


Austin Chronicle

Published in association with the Southwestern Writers Collection, Texas State University

7 x 10 in. 528 pages 20 color plates, 56 halftones