In my paper: Sommer is heavily under the influence of happy mestizaje theory (which has the flaws of contact theory, inter alia). 90s multiculturalism in US promoted both of these and in that way echoed some of Bolívar and Martí, or some famous phrases from them at least. But the actual 19th century is more complex and contradictory, less triumphant, than Sommer’s narrative suggests. These points have been made already but it is worth gathering them together.
This paper is on the dysfunctional family (cf. the families in crisis thesis) — families that disappear the nation and do not consolidate it.
* * * I am interested because of the way race works, novels working as strategies to contain democracy and maintain hierarchies [work this out, I had such a brilliant, concise formulation while washing dishes last night and I did not write it down]. Was I thinking about this paper or my other one, when I was washing dishes? * * *
* * * At Angola: everyone was black visiting prisoners on this former plantation, and we were watching cowboys and Indians on the tv, and I thought, what a perfect colonial scene; we have not left the late 19th century, US army subjugating new lands while the people they half liberated, still incarcerated, look on as a kind of fellow American * * *