Who's Afraid of Spanglish?

Bueno, this is good noticias. Venerable anthology publisher W. W. Norton & Company has brought out its first collection of Latino literature—and a significant portion of it will be devoted to Spanglish.

Well-known Mexican scholar Ilan Stavans, an influential figure in U.S. Latino literature, has chosen pieces covering approximately the last 500 years. He will dedicate a significant part of the 2,700-page “The Norton Anthology of Latino Literature" to Spanglish, a meld of English and Spanish which Stavans calls part of the evolution of language.

In an interview with the AP, Stavans, who has been trumpeting Spanglish for three decades, said readers who do not speak “Spanglish” will still read it, consuming, for example, books by Pulitzer Prize winning Dominican writer Junot Díaz.

“Twenty years ago, it was an impediment,” Stavans said. “But now it is not.”

The anthology includes 201 authors, spanning from the first Spanish explorers to present writers. He includes works written in “Dominicanish”, “Cubonics”, “Nuyorican” and “Tex Mex.”

“We are close to 50 million (Hispanics in the United States). This is the time to affirm we have been here, that we have memories, that we are an integral part of society…,” he told the AP. “It's important to know where we came from and where we are going.”

AP contributed to this report.