This is my first blog, and I'm not exactly sure what the parameters are for this one. We talked about the correlation between writing and power in class today, and I was particularly interested in how powerful the medium of writing can be, especially when one is living with unfortunate circumstances, with no real outlet to express their pain. Writing can be very therapeutic and necessary to heal wounds from imprisonment, living under a dictatorship, and severe censorship in general, which becomes apparent with Sarmiento's Facundo.
Facundo isn't exactly the quickest or easiest read thus far, but knowing that it was immensely powerful for an entire culture at one point makes it more immediately interesting. The time period in which it was written, therefore the language that comes with it makes it a more difficult read, for me, at least. I've also noticed that having grown up in an ADD society and generation, I seek stimulous constantly and am bored with any form of entertainment unless it delivers action almost instantaneously. I've noticed that literature became a lot more interesting, on the whole, in the 20th century. Obviously there are exceptions, and there are certainly many influential, revolutionary books written before the 20th century, but the language becomes so dated, even the English translation doesn't feel like it's in a language I can understand fully.
The material for this class is a lot more promising than most literature classes that I've looked at in the UBC course catalogue. Latin America has a rich, fascinating history, that even outdated material can still be interesting because the content and emotion drives each piece of work. I haven't read too much Canadian literature, seeing as I'm not Canadian and have only lived here during University, but what I have read has proved my belief that Canada is too functional a country to produce a high quantity of engaging, passionate, and painful dramas, whether they be fictional or not. Canadians are too nice and the government here is so much more regulated and maintained than any of it's Southern neighbors, I would image that it's hard for the average Canadian to know what being truly screwed over by your government and alienated within your own culture is like. There was no slavery and were no revolutions.
Latin American and Spanish literature I've read thus far has all been worthwhile and interesting. At some point I plan on living in Spain and/or Ecuador, so knowing a bit of background about important works will probably prove ultimately helpful in me attempting to converse intelligently in Spanish (though I don't know if that's possible yet).