Friday, October 03, 2014
Bless Me, Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya
Bless Me, Ultima, Rudolfo Anaya. Boston: Grand Central Publishing/ Hachette Book Group, 1972, 1979. e-book, 225 pps.
Bless Me, Ultima is both a classic and a book that has experienced banning. In this haunting fiction about a family living in New Mexico-- and particularly a boy named Antonio and the curandera Ultima who comes to live with his family-- ways of power are described along side the ways that humans have of being with each other. Antonio experiences many changes and he grows up.
sapphoq reviews says: Rudolfo Anaya's book transported me to New Mexico. His lyrical breath-taking descriptions of the beauty of the llano and a disappearing way of life touched me greatly. The use of New Mexican folktales added to Bless Me, Ultima greatly. I think it is a great compliment to the authors who have written books good enough to be banned or censored. I hope someday to have one of my books in that category.
Bless Me, Ultima was banned because of religious beliefs expressed in it. The mixture of Catholicism and folk beliefs occurs throughout the world. Missionaries have allowed this intertwining in order to win converts. I found it odd that such a thing was a reason to ban this fine book. Highly recommended to all mature readers who are able to tolerate and embrace present cultural realities as they relate to the path of shamans.