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Judith Ortiz Cofer describes “a migrating consciousness” that is explored in a “liminal space” that involves “linguistic decoding” of experience to find that freedom. These concepts can be employed to explain how Lorraine López’s The Darling works to demonstrate how its heroine, Caridad, attains the freedom of selfhood, through both literary and real-life experiences, by exploring, challenging, and then ultimately transcending the oppression faced by females living in male-dominated cultures.


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  • Institution
    • Dahlonega

  • Publisher
    • Journal of the South Atlantic Modern Language Association

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Additional information
    • Author Biography:

      Donna A. Gessell is professor of English at the University of North Georgia. Recent publications include “Peace Pedagogy from the Borderlines,” a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Pacifism and Nonviolence, co-authored with Drs. Renée Bricker, Yi Deng, and Michael Proulx (2018); and “Judith Ortiz Cofer and the Ecology of Creating Identity” in South Atlantic Review (2017). Email:

      Book or Journal Information:

      South Atlantic Review, Vol. 85, No. 1, Spring 2020.