Three Questions by Daniel Olivas: Menes and Huerta

DANIEL OLIVAS has built a formidable library of interviews for LARB: Sandra Cisneros, Rudolfo Anaya, Mario Alberto Zambrano, Reyna Grande, Manuel Ramos, Alex Espinosa, Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs, Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Melinda Palacios, Justin Torres, Rubén Martínez, and now two very different kinds of writers, one a poet, the other an interdisciplinary scholar, both of whom are asked a set of only three questions.  


Orlando Ricardo Menes was born in Perú to Cuban parents but has lived most of his life in the United States. Since 2000 he has taught in the Creative Writing Program at the University of Notre Dame. His newest poetry collection, Fetish, won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry. Menes is also the author of Furia (2005) and Rumba Atop the Stones (2001). In addition, he has edited two anthologies of poetry: The Open Light: Poets from Notre Dame, 1991-2008 (2011) and Renaming Ecstasy: Latino Writings on the Sacred (2004). Menes has also published numerous translations of poetry in Spanish. [Go to interview]

Dr. Alvaro Huerta is a Visiting Scholar at UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center. As an interdisciplinary scholar, he conducts research and teaches on various fields, including urban planning / community development, civic engagement / community organizing, immigration, Chicana/o–Latina/o studies / history, social network analysis & the informal economy. Currently, he’s working on a series of scholarly articles for top-tier academic journals related to his research interests. Raised in East Los Angeles’ notorious Ramona Gardens housing project, Dr. Huerta is the product of public schools, from the inner-city public schools of LAUSD to elite universities at UC.  [Go to interview]




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Open to any author writing in English about the Chicanx/Latinx experience, the Rivera Book Prize is committed to the discovery and fostering of extraordinary writing by a first-time or early career author whose work examines the long and varied contributions of Chicanx/Latinx in the US. The Rivera Book Prize aims to provide a platform that showcases the emerging literary talent of the Chicanx/Latinx community, to cultivate the next generation of Chicanx/Latinx writers, and to continue the rich literary memory of Tomás Rivera, Chicano author, poet, activist, and educator.

Entry Fee: $35. Entry fees are non-refundable.

Apply HERE