Making Familia from Scratch
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In this chapter, the “unfamiliar” ambiguity of the pocho is addressed through the pocha’s gaze in Lourdes Portillo’s La Ofrenda and The Devil Never Sleeps. In her cinema, cross-border communities are seen as integral to the rewriting of Mexican-Americanness and offer her crossings as a way of recreating a new familia. Lourdes Portillo brings together self-representation, media, and the wholistic response of Chicana artists to previous versions of family, home, and “evil” imposed on crossings into the USA. Cherrie Moraga’s Loving in the War Years and Waiting in the Wings rewrite the “unfamiliar” as oppressive traditions of heteropatriarchy. Her works address the making of familia from scratch, its crossings, and the stereotypes that criminalize that which is outside the norm.