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The Children of Sanchez: Autobiography of a Mexican Familyby Oscar Lewis
Synopses & Reviews
A pioneering work from a visionary anthropologist, The Children of Sanchez is hailed around the world as a watershed achievement in the study of poverty—a uniquely intimate investigation, as poignant today as when it was first published.
It is the epic story of the Sánchez family, told entirely by its members—Jesus, the 50-year-old patriarch, and his four adult children—as their lives unfold in the Mexico City slum they call home. Weaving together their extraordinary personal narratives, Oscar Lewis creates a sympathetic but ultimately tragic portrait that is at once harrowing and humane, mystifying and moving.
An invaluable document, full of verve and pathos, The Children of Sanchez reads like the best of fiction, with the added impact that it is all, undeniably, true.
An anthropology classic, Oscar Lewis's pioneering The Children of Sanchez is a deep and intimate account of an actual family from the slums of Mexico City.
About the Author
Oscar Lewis was born in New York City in 1914 and grew up on a small farm in Upstate New York. He received his Ph.D. in anthropology from Columbia University in 1940; he taught at Brooklyn College and Washington University, Illinois. He was the recipient of various distinguised fellowships and grants.
From his first visit to Mexico in 1943, Mexican peasants and city dwellers had been among his major interests. His book Life in a Mexican Village: Tepoztlán Restudied initiated a whole new trend in independent restudies in aanthropology. In addition to The Children of Sánchez his other studies of Mexican life include Five Families, Pedro Martínez, and A Death in the Sánchez Family. He is also the author of La Vida: A Puerto Rican Family in the Culture of Poverty-San Juan and New York (also available from Vintage Books), which recieved the National Book Award. A further study of Puerto Rican culture, Six Women, was published in early 1970.
Professor Lewis also published articles in anthropological and other journals, many of which were collected in Anthropological Essays. He died in 1970.
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