40th Anniversary Edition
Paperback | 9780268029791 | February 2011
eBook (PDF) | 9780268158613 | April 2014
eBook (EPUB) | 9780268080624 | April 2014
Barrio Boy is the remarkable story of one boy's journey from a Mexican village so small its main street didn't have a name, to the barrio of Sacramento, California, bustling and thriving in the early decades of the twentieth century. With vivid imagery and a rare gift for re-creating a child's sense of time and place, Ernesto Galarza gives an account of the early experiences of his extraordinary life—from revolution in Mexico to segregation in the United States—that will continue to delight readers for generations to come. Since it was first published in 1971, Galarza’s classic work has been assigned in high school and undergraduate classrooms across the country, profoundly affecting thousands of students who read this true story of acculturation into American life. To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the publication of Barrio Boy, the University of Notre Dame Press is proud to reissue this best-selling book with a new text design and cover, as well an introduction—by Ilan Stavans, the distinguished cultural critic and editor of the Norton Anthology of Latino Literature—which places Ernesto Galarza and Barrio Boy in historical context.
Ernesto Galarza (1905–1984) was a labor organizer, historian, professor, and community activist. When he was eight, he migrated from Jalcocotán, Nayarit, Mexico, to Sacramento, California, where he worked as a farm laborer. He received a Ph.D. in history from Columbia University. In addition to Barrio Boy, he is the author of a number of books, including Strangers in Our Fields (1956), Merchants of Labor (1964), and Spiders in the House and Workers in the Fields (1970). In 1979, Dr. Galarza was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature.
“A useful introduction by Ilan Stavans and Galarza’s original preface accompanies this fortieth-anniversary edition of Barrio Boy. The book is well known within Chicano literary scholarship. It belongs to the genre of autobiography, certainly an empirical genre, a form of personal history, but also a self-portrait, a story that may serve as an example for readers.” —Journal of American Ethnic History
"To re-encounter Barrio Boy by Ernesto Galarza is to indulge in deja vu from the early Chicano Movement concerns about acculturation and identity construction. The genuine story about a boy's journey reminds many of us of our own trajectory and how we had to negotiate a new ethnic self. The lessons are moving and heart-warming as markers of a collective perseverance and survival. The story embodies a key phase of immigration when the barrio becomes our first community to embrace or overcome. After all is said and done, the 'barrio boy' stays true to himself as an apprentice to Americanism without sacrificing his origins. He proves that being bicultural and bilingual are positive qualities worthy of upholding." ~Francisco A. Lomeli, University of California, Santa Barbara