Santiago's Children What I Learned about Life at an Orphanage in Chile

ISBN-10: 0292717423

ISBN-13: 9780292717428

Edition: 2008

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Description: Unclear about his future career path, Steve Reifenberg found himself in the early 1980s working at a small orphanage in a poor neighborhood in Santiago, Chile, where a determined single woman was trying to create a stable home for a dozen or so children who had been abandoned or abused. With little more than good intentions and very limited Spanish, the 23-year-old Reifenberg plunged into the life of the Hogar Domingo Savio, becoming a foster father to kids who stretched his capacities for compassion and understanding in ways he never could have imagined back in the United States. In this beautifully written memoir, Reifenberg recalls his two years at the Hogar Domingo Savio. His vivid descriptions create indelible portraits of a dozen remarkable kidsmature-beyond-her-years Veroacute;nica; sullen, unresponsive Marcelo; and irrepressible toddler Andreacute;s, among them. As Reifenberg learns more about the children's circumstances, he begins to see the bigger picture of life in Chile at a crucial moment in its history. The early 1980s were a time of economic crisis and political uprising against the brutal military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. Reifenberg skillfully interweaves the story of the orphanage with the broader national and international forces that dramatically impact the lives of the kids. By the end of Santiago's Children , Reifenberg has told an engrossing story not only of his own coming-of-age, but also of the courage and resilience of the poorest and most vulnerable residents of Latin America.

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Book details

List price: $24.95
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: University of Texas Press
Publication date: 4/15/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 250
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.880
Language: English

Foreword
Acknowledgments
Visions of a Family Farm
The Arrival
Spanish Lessons
Olga and the Hogar
Not as Imagined
Summer
More Spanish and Other Lessons about Chile
Politics
The Pacific Coast
The End of Summer
A New School Year
Professional Conversations
On Being a Teacher
Noisy and Complicated
The Farm Revisited
Donors, Demons, and Dentists
Marcelo
An Unexpected Journey
A Home on Tupungato Street
Catholics, Mormons, and Evangelicals
Boys, Babies, and Biters
The University
Winter in a New Neighborhood
Sebasti_n
Explaining a Few Things
You're Going to Do What?
Groping in the Dark
God Will See Us Through
The End of the Road
The Days of Waiting
The Visit of the Gringos
Searching for Something
Taking Leave
Epilogue
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