By 2 something I’m wandering in the treacherous land of lit search. I’m trying to find a definitive something for the “first” in chicana history, but failing. I stumble sideways into the academic/activist pairings that so intrigue me and land on Meling Cheng’s excellent analysis of Lacy’s Dark Madonna piece commissioned by UCLA to celebrate the opening of the Center for the Study of Women. While I’m writing about the much earlier Life and Times of Donaldina Cameron, the connections between the two pieces are strong and in may ways Life and Times is the logical precursor to the Dark Madonna.
As Kathleen Hendrix observes, the symposium’s overall message is encapsulated by the Jungian analyst Jean Shinoda Bolen’s remark: “We’ve been told women are a group that has no history. We are reclaiming our history. We don’t have to reinvent. We have to remember and reclaim the power that is within us. It is in those real dark nights of the soul. That’s when you go down
― 125 ―into the cave and discover the reality. You leave, still facing life in the morning, but strengthened by the experience in the dark.””