Rudolfo Anaya life and biography

Rudolfo Anaya picture, image, poster

Rudolfo Anaya biography

Date of birth : 1937-10-30
Date of death : -
Birthplace :
Nationality :
Category : Famous Figures
Last modified : 2011-05-12
Credited as : Author and novelist, Bless Me, Ultima,

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Rudolfo Anaya is an American author. Best known for his 1972 novel Bless Me, Ultima, Anaya is considered one of the founders of the canon of contemporary Chicano literature.

When he was a teenager, Anaya suffered a diving accident while swimming with friends in an irrigation ditch and broke two vertebrae in his neck. At first rendered paralyzed by the accident, he eventually made a substantial recovery, learning to walk again though never becoming entirely free of pain. In 1956, Anaya graduated from an Albuquerque high school. He then attended business school for two years, but he found it unfulfilling. He transferred to the University of New Mexico, where he graduated in 1963 with a degree in English. l Anaya worked as a public school teacher in Albuquerque from 1963 to 1970. In 1966, he married Patricia Lawless, who would serve as his editor over the years. She encouraged him to pursue his literary endeavors, and over a period of seven years, he completed his first novel, Bless Me, Ultima. Dozens of publishing houses rejected the novel. Finally, in 1972, a group of editors at El Grito, a Chicano quarterly, accepted the book. Bless Me, Ultima went on to win the prestigious Premio Quinto Sol award and is now considered a classic Chicano work. It was chosen as one of the books of The Big Read, a community-reading program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts. It is also one of the literary works in 2009 of the United States Academic Decathlon. Anaya followed Bless Me, Ultima with Heart of Aztlan (1978) and Tortuga (1979), forming a trilogy.

In 1974, Anaya accepted a position as an associate professor at the University of New Mexico. He became a full professor in the Department of English Language and Literature in 1988. Since retiring from the University in 1993 as a Professor Emeritus, Anaya has continued to write, completing—among other works—the novel Alburquerque and the Sonny Baca quartet of detective novels. He has recently published a number of books for children and young adults.

Author of books:

Bless Me, Ultima (1972, novel)
Heart of Aztlan (1976, novel)
Tortuga (1979, novel)
The Silence of the Llano (1982)
The Legend of La Llorona (1984, novel)
A Chicano in China (1986, essays)
The Anaya Reader (1995)
Rio Grande Fall (1996)
Shaman Winter (1998, novel, mystery)
Alburquerque (1999, novel, extra "r" is deliberate)
Zia Summer (2000, novel)
Serafina's Stories (2004)
The Man Who Could Fly and Other Stories (2006)
ChupaCabra and the Roswell UFO (2008, book for children)

Awards and honors:

Premio Quinto Sol literary award, for Bless Me, Ultima, 1970
NM Governor's Public Service Award, 1978, 1980
Natl Chicano Council on Higher Education fellowship, 1978–79
NEA fellowships, 1979, 1980
American Book Award, Before Columbus Foundation, for Tortuga, 1980
D.H.L., Univ. of Albuquerque, 1981
Corporation for Public Broadcasting script development award, for "Rosa Linda," 1982
Award for Achievement in Chicano Literature, Hispanic Caucus of Teachers of English, 1983
Kellogg Foundation fellowship, 1983–85
D.H.L., Marycrest Coll., 1984
Mexican Medal of Friendship, Mexican Consulate of Albuquerque, 1986
PEN-West Fiction Award, 1992, for Alburquerque.
NEA National Medal of Arts Lifetime Honor, 2001 NEA National Medal of Arts webpage
Outstanding Latino/a Cultural Award in Literary Arts or Publications, AAHHE, 2003

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