Papeles de Pandora
By Rosario Ferre
(Vintage Books USA, Paperback, 9780375724695, 256pp.)
Publication Date: September 26, 2000
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From Rosario Ferre (nominated for the National Book Award for The House on the Lagoon), her first work of fiction, long out of print in any edition, in the original Spanish and including a previously unpublished story and two poems.
Papeles de Pandora contains the stories that first brought Rosario Ferre to the attention of Spanish-language readers throughout the world. In this collection, Ferre introduces her major theme: the position of women in a fast-changing but still patriarchal culture. In "La muneca menor"("The Youngest Doll"), a maiden aunt uses her skill at making honey-filled dolls to get revenge. "La bella durmiente" ("The Sleeping Beauty"), recounts the brief life of a young dancer through letters and newspaper clippings that reveal much more than they say. And in "Cuando las mujeres quieren a los hombres" ("When Women Love Men"), a society lady and a prostitute form a startling alliance after the death of the man they both loved.Richly imagined, elegantly written, Ferre's stories are early proof of her stature among contemporary Latin American writers.