Women's History
Book Reviews


All the Women Are Called María
by Juan J. Sánchez, Vantage Press, New York, ©2003

This book by a high teacher was written to both recognize and honor the past contributions of Mexican and Mexican-American women. Using the historic fiction approach, he gives us fourteen short bio histories of “Marias” who in some way influenced Mexican history. Some stories echo the lives of better known real women such as Malinche, Sor Juana Inez de la Cruz, or the “Adelitas” of the revolutionary period. Others are written to illustrate the every day struggles and problems facing the particular “Maria” of the story, who always takes intelligent action and manages to overcome the limits on her life.

For classroom use, one might assign one or two of the stories according to the period under study. Students then could do independent research on historic events mentioned in the story or on womens’ roles generally in the time period. In all cases one must keep in mind that the stories, while based on good research, are fictional.

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