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Brief descriptions of several Hispanic holidays as they are celebrated in North, Central, and South America.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780899191553
ISBN-10: 089919155X
Format: Paperback
(230mm x 190mm x 7mm)
Pages: 91
Imprint: Houghton Mifflin (Trade)
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Publish Date: 26-Jul-1984
Country of Publication: United States


US Kirkus Review » With English and Spanish texts on facing pages, and pertly illustrated throughout: a cleverly conceived introduction to the year's holidays, beginning with New Year's Day, as celebrated in "the English-speaking countries" and the Spanish-speaking countries of the Americas - and, in the latter case, as part of Indian or Christian tradition. Some of this - like New Year's customs north and south - is simply comparative culture of a well-established sort. But when Peri explains the Latin American Three Kings' Day, and then notes that some families keep the North American Christmas too, she's getting at realities that youngsters encounter with puzzlement. Along the way, explanations are rife: "What is the reason for all the merrymaking at Carnival time?"; why October 12, "which English-speaking Americas call Columbus Day, is known as El Dis de la Raza, the Day of the Race, in many parts of Spanish-speaking America." Also: festivities are described in tantalizing detail; much is made, without fanfare, of Puerto Rican cultural blends; and larger significances are suggested. At the close of the considerable Halloween/All Souls' Day section, for instance, Peri writes: "What these customs seem to tell us is that no matter how much we may learn about the world around us, we will always be curious about the mystery of death." So the book not only exposes children, north and south, to common, similar, and disparate customs, it roughs-in a variety of cultural and social intersections - without the least didacticism. (Kirkus Reviews)

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