If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.

Here are the upcoming WWK interviews for the month of June!

June 6 Maggie Toussaint, Confound It

June 13 Nicole J. Burton, Swimming Up the Sun

June 20 Julie Mulhern, Shadow Dancing

June 27 Abby L. Vandiver, Debut author, Secrets, Lies, & Crawfish Pies

Our June Saturday Guest Blogger Schedule: 6/2--Joanne Guidoccio, 6/9 Julie Mulhern, 6/16--Margaret S. Hamilton, 6/23--Kait Carson, and 6/30--Edith Maxwell.

Please welcome two new members to WWK--Annette Dashofy, who will blog on alternative Sundays with Jim Jackson, and Nancy Eady, who will blog on every fourth Monday. Thanks for blogging with us Annette and Nancy!

Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Annette Dashofy's Uneasy Prey was released in March. It is the sixth Zoe Chambers Mystery. The seventh, Cry Wolf, will be released on September 18th. Look for E. B. Davis's interview with Annette on September 19th.

Carla Damron's quirky short story, "Subplot", was published in the Spring edition of The Offbeat Literary Journal. You can find it here: http://offbeat.msu.edu/volume-18-spring-2018/

Tina Whittle's sixth Tai Randolph mystery, Necessary Ends, debuts on April 3, 2018. Look for it here. Tina was nominated for a Derringer Award for her novelette, "Trouble Like A Freight Train Coming." We're all crossing our fingers for her.

James M. Jackson's Empty Promises, the next in the Seamus McCree mystery series (5th), was published on April 3, 2018. Purchase links are here. He's working on Seamus McCree #6 (False Bottom)

Dark Sister, a poetry collection, is Linda Rodriguez's tenth published book. It's available for sale here:

Shari Randall's "Pets" will be included in Chesapeake Crimes: Fur, Feathers, and Felonies anthology, which will be published in 2018. In the same anthology "Rasputin," KM Rockwood's short story, will also be published. Her short story "Goldie" will be published in the Busted anthology, which will be released by Level Best Books on April 25th.

Shari Randall's second Lobster Shack Mystery, Against the Claw, will be available in July 31, 2018.


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Cinco de Mayo

The image of Cinco de Mayo in American minds is of a Latino St. Patrick’s Day, a day to get drunk on cervezas instead of beers with photos of beautiful girls in brightly colored whirling skirts rather than leprechauns. Many think it is Mexican Independence Day (which is actually September 16).

If people travel from the U.S. to Latin America, they won’t find it celebrated anywhere, except regionally in Mexico around the city of Puebla. Cinco de Mayo actually commemorates the Battle of Puebla in 1862, in which Mexico defeated French forces which were trying to invade Mexico. Some immigrants from that region of Mexico to California first celebrated Cinco de Mayo in their U.S. exile. The beer and liquor industry in the U.S. picked up on it in the 1980s, featuring it in TV commercials and advertising everywhere. The Liquor companies wanted to gain a larger foothold in the growing Latino market, and they can always use another holiday to encourage people to get drunk. At the same time, many U.S. Latino communities saw Cinco de Mayo as a time to put on fiestas and celebrate the music, dancing, and other cultural attributes of their communities. So Cinco de Mayo has become more of an American holiday than a Mexican one.

 On the one hand, the holiday has been exploited cynically to sell liquor and beer, using every Mexican or Latino stereotype possible. On the other hand, it has been used to bring communities together around a common culture and demonstrate the beauties of that culture to mainstream U.S. society. The sad thing is that some Latino children know no more about the actual roots of the holiday than the average American citizen. It is actually an occasion of genuine pride for those with Mexican heritage.
In the Battle of Puebla, the French armies were better equipped and armed, numbering 2,000 soldiers more than the Mexican army, which was led by General Ignacio Zaragoza. French Major General Charles de Lorencez, leading what was considered the best army in the world at that time, had pushed the ragtag Mexican army back from Veracruz and from Orizaba. The Mexican army fell back to the fortress city of Puebla. Lorencez expected an easy victory. Instead, he retreated with his defeated army in the rain back to Orizaba, having suffered more than three times as many casualties as the Mexican army.

It was a genuine David vs. Goliath moment, and the regional holiday it spawned was a joyous celebration of Mexican culture. So if you’re celebrating Cinco de Mayo this year, remember it’s about more than cervezas and tequila or sombreros and cactus. It’s a celebration of about keeping a country free of European overlords (if only for a little while—the French took over Mexico a year later until Mexican Independence in 1867). Cinco de Mayo is an American celebration of all the fabulous foods, art, music, dance, poetry, and other cultural gifts Mexican immigrants have given America.


Warren Bull said...

Cinco de Mayo was like the Battle of Bunker Hill during the U S American Revolution. It let the larger, better-trained and more-respected army know that there would be no easy victory. I've always thought the date is celebrated in part because it is easier to pronounce in English then more important dates in Mexican History.

Gloria Alden said...

There was a short story in our 3rd grade reading book when I was teaching that dealt with the celebration. I don't think it covered the historical meaning, that I recall, but more about the social customs associated with it here in the U.S. The same with the social studies books. It's a shame, but the social studies books in general were a shame - a short gun effect of a few paragraphs or a page or two on all aspects historical or social. I learned more from this blog than I ever did in school - both as a student and as a teacher.

Linda Rodriguez said...

Warren, you're absolutley right about the comparison to bunker Hill.

Gloria, Cinco de Mayo per se is an entirely American holiday. In Mexico where it is celebrated (around Puebla), it is known as the Battle for the city of Puebla, not Cinco de Mayo. It's become a celebration of Mexican heritage (and now Latino heritage) for Mexican-Americans (now all American Latinos). I just hate to see it turned into just another excuse to get drunk by the liquor companies.