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Best Book for a Transformative New Year, NPR
The poignant journey of a "minority student" who pays the cost of his social assimilation and academic success with a painful alienation-from his past, his parents, his culture. Provocative in its positions on affirmative action and bilingual education, Hunger of Memory is simultaneously a powerful political statement, a profound study of the importance of language, and a moving portrait of a boy struggling to become a man.
"His story is extraordinarily sensitive and compassionate, yet disarmingly objective, a genuine act of human and religious faith. Few have presented with such skill the indestructible intimacy of family love and its resilience under the stress of change. This book provides new understanding of the dynamism of language in establishing a person's private and public identity."—Prof. Walter J. Ong, St. Louis University
“Superb autobiographical essay ... Mr. Rodriguez offers himself as an example of the long labor of change: its costs, about which he is movingly frank, its loneliness, but also its triumph.” — The New York Times Book Review
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
Prologue: Middle-Class Pastoral; 1. Aria; 2. The Achievement of Desire; 3. Credo; 4. Complexion; 5. Profession; 6. Mr. Secrets