From Wikipedia: Rudolfo Anaya (born October 30, 1937) is an Mexican-American author. Best known for his 1972 novel Bless Me, Ultima, Anaya is considered one of the founders of the canon of contemporary Chicano literature. ~ Rudolfo Alfonso Anaya was born in the rural village of Pastura, New Mexico, to Martin and Rafaelita Anaya. His father came from a family of cattle workers and sheepherders, and his mother's family were farmers. Anaya was the fifth of their seven children together; he also had three half-siblings from his parents' previous marriages. When Anaya was a small child, his family moved to Santa Rosa, New Mexico. In 1952, they relocated to Albuquerque, New Mexico, where they lived in the Barelas neighborhood. Spanish was spoken at home, and Anaya did not learn English until he started school. When he was a teenager, Anaya suffered a diving accident while swimming with friends in an irrigation ditch and broke two vertebrae in his neck. At first rendered paralyzed by the accident, he eventually made a substantial recovery, learning to walk again though never becoming entirely free of pain. In 1956, Anaya graduated from an Albuquerque high school. He then attended business school for two years, but he found it unfulfilling. He transferred to the University of New Mexico, where he graduated in 1963 with a degree in English. l Anaya worked as a public school teacher in Albuquerque from 1963 to 1970. In 1966, he married Patricia Lawless, who would serve as his editor over the years. She encouraged him to pursue his literary endeavors, and over a period of seven years, he completed his first novel, Bless Me, Ultima. Dozens of publishing houses rejected the novel. Finally, in 1972, a group of editors at El Grito, a Chicano quarterly, accepted the book. Bless Me, Ultima went on to win the prestigious Premio Quinto Sol award and is now considered a classic Chicano work.
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