53 pages 1 hour read

Sandra Benitez

A Place Where the Sea Remembers

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1993

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Teacher Introduction

A Place Where the Sea Remembers

  • Genre: Literary Fiction
  • Originally Published: 1993
  • Reading Level/Interest: 790L; adult
  • Structure/Length: 176 pages
  • Protagonist/Central Conflict: This novel follows several characters in the Mexican village of Santiago, weaving together various storylines. At the core of each story is a conflict that reveals different aspects of love, loss, redemption, and cultural identity.
  • Potential Sensitivity Issues: Some scenes of violence, including domestic violence; sexual abuse and rape; discussions of miscarriage; class and racial tensions

Sandra Benitez, Author

  • Bio: Born on March 10, 1941, in Washington, DC; a well-known author who writes primarily about the lives and experiences of Latin American women; works often explore themes of family, identity, cultural heritage, and women’s roles within Latin American communities
  • Other Works: Bitter Grounds (1997); The Weight of All Things (2000); Bag Lady: A Memoir (2016)

CENTRAL THEMES connected and noted throughout this Teaching Guide:

  • Tradition Versus Modernity
  • Life and Death
  • Preserving the Memories of Others

STUDY OBJECTIVES: In accomplishing the components of this Teaching Guide, students will:

  • Develop an understanding of the literary and socioeconomic contexts regarding the use of magical realism by Latin American authors that impact the characterization of Benitez’s story.
  • Analyze paired texts and other brief resources to make connections via the text’s themes of Tradition Versus Modernity, Life and Death, and Preserving the Memories of Others.