By Ana Castillo
Black Dove: Mamá, Mi'jo, and Me looks at what it ability to be a unmarried, brown, feminist father or mother in a global of mass incarceration, racial profiling, and police brutality. via startling humor and love, Castillo weaves intergenerational tales touring from Mexico urban to Chicago. And in doing so, she narrates a few of America's so much heated political debates and pressing social injustices in the course of the oft-neglected lens of motherhood and family.
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Additional resources for Black Dove: Mamá, Mi’jo, and Me
Before she got a “wringer” washing machine, there was a very long walk to the laundromat, ironing, cleaning linoleum floors, and many other tasks that fell to her. As I grew into a young teen, some of these chores were passed on to me. Tortilla making was only one reponsibility to be accomplished before we moved on to the next thing. My older siblings were always out on weekends, and both left home not long after high school. Tradition would have held the role of Mamá’s helper for the first-born daughter but, since she was gone, I became the daughter who learned to clean, iron, and, yes, make tortillas.
She never danced to “Lagrimas Negras” under a Cuban moon. She never worked her naturally copper-colored body into a swimsuit to lie out on a beach, not in Havana, Veracruz, or later in Chicago, where she and my mother took all of us children to the Twelfth Street Beach plenty of times during the summers. Neither of them went in to bathe with us splashing, tireless children. They watched from the shore with sandy tacos wrapped in wax paper and hard-boiled eggs and Kool-Aid in a big thermos, all of which we had carried on the very long jaunt from our inner-city flats.
She remarried—a Tex-Mex field worker with a pencil-thin mustache and Western boots—and my mother urged her younger sister and the new husband to come up north to Chicago. My aunt had learned to cook a wide range of delicacies, and she had no problem adding to her menu her norteño husband’s preferences: flour tortillas, pinto beans, fried potatoes and eggs, and, of course, lots of red meat. Tía Flora was never a woman who liked to argue, so she kept her husband happy. But she did love to dance, which he did not.
Black Dove: Mamá, Mi’jo, and Me by Ana Castillo