Eléna Rivera — Remembrance of Things Plastic

In Remembrance of Things Plastic, Eléna Rivera charts a path between cultural displacement and the hyper-pull of consumer images. Migrating from the strictures of girlhood (“Marooned in a room the size of a dollhouse”) through the acculturation implicit in Garbo’s eyebrows, Rivera laments the social split between self-hood and the feminine body — the insurgent exchange of the personal for plastic that accompanies American adolescence. Through these small remembrances, Rivera recalls the isolation of one between objects: “I was given a shiny plastic yellow ring-shaped radio,” She writes “with a twist; you could twist it open and hold it up to your ear like a phone.”

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