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Abstract

In her article "Rewriting Space in Ruiz de Burton's Who Would Have Thought It?" Bernadine M. Hernandez analyses María Amparo Ruiz de Burton's text in the context of Mexican American and US-American literary history. After the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed in 1848, the place where Mexicanos lived became contested space and land of these Native subjects were conquered, penetrated, and colonized without the hope of regaining power or agency over land, status, or space. This newly deemed "opened" space was reconstructed via a literary legal document written to benefit Anglo Americans. Language is tied to the historical process of space and with the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo language redefined the territory of the United States, Mexico, and all the Native inhabitants who once had a "place" that quickly transformed into "opened space." Ruiz de Burton, who was writing during this displacement, develops different spaces within her novel Who Would Have Thought It? She uses the language that displaced her in the Treaty to reconstruct her own space within the terms "savage" and "citizen" and creates a space of racial and class difference that places Mexico and the Mexican American within and against the United States.

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