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The Children of Sánchez

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  493 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews

A pioneering work from a visionary anthropologist, The Children of Sánchez is hailed around the world as a watershed achievement in the study of poverty a uniquely intimate investigation, as poignant today as when it was first published.
 
It is the epic story of the Sánchez family, told entirely by its members Jesús, the 50-year-old patriarch, and his four adult children as

...more
Paperback, 544 pages
Published February 12th 1979 by Vintage Books (first published 1961)
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(showing 1-30)
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Santiago Rivas
Dec 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
El libro en español, solo fué editado 2 veces, una en octubre del 64, y la segunda en diciembre de ese año, pero en febrero del 65, la sociedad Mexicana de Geografía y estadistica demandó al libro por considerarlo denigrante, la procuraduría de la republica determinó que no habia delito qué perseguir, sin embargo el fondo de cultura economica, no volvió a editar el libro nunca mas, mi abuela lo leyó en los 60's y cuando le mencioné el libro me dijo que todavia se acordaba mucho de ese libro, que ...more
Carol
Nov 16, 2009 rated it really liked it
Biography of the Sanchez family of Mexico City between 1940's and 1950's. I read this when I was 16 and a junior in high school and it was an eye opening experience. I learned that 2 or more people experiencing the same event do not view it the same way or react to it the same. I decided to read it again and see what I got this time. This time it made me mad that the 4 children could not see what would change their lives and get them out of the poverty and hard lives they were living. Tradition ...more
Rose
Feb 09, 2013 rated it liked it
This is a difficult story to read because it follows a family through the cycle of life where the children can't quite rise above the poverty and ignorance of their time and situation. It struck me as the embodiment of why the macho culture of men having mistresses who produce second, third or fourth families to feed hinders the children. It robs them of a better life when their father can't live with them and support them all. A very sad but deeply moving book. It sticks with the reader for yea ...more
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
This is not fiction, as some reviewers seem to believe. It is an anthropological case study of what Lewis termed "the culture of poverty" in 1950s Mexico City. So real was it, that Lewis was sued for defamation by the administration--they apparently didn't want people to know the reality of DF's poorest.

I first ran across this book in highschool back in the 1970s, and then a film was made based on the characters, with a soundtrack by Chuck Mangione which was very popular. (I later saw the film,
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Profesor Alvarez
El mejor analisis antropologico de la cultura de la pobreza, un libro que debe ser leido por cualquier profesional si se quiere entender las condiciones extremas de la humanidad.
Darya
Dec 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
حس نزدیکی با روایت های آدم هایی از طبقه ای دیگر...کشوری دیگری...جهانی دیگر...نزدیکی با تمام حس های انسانی انگار که خودت باشی
Javier
Feb 21, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Era un libro que tenía ganas de leer desde hace mucho tiempo. La forma en la que los miembros de la familia "Sanchez" narra sus desventuras me parece un ejemplo perfecto del "cada quien cuenta como le va en la feria". El final, a pesar de que se publicó en 1964, sigue reflejando de forma muy precisa el lado más pobre de la Ciudad de México, con sus vecindades, sus ciudades perdidas y las increíbles maneras que tiene el mexicano (y en especial el chilango) para poder llevarse algo de comer a la b ...more
Mohsen Rajabi
Feb 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mohsen by: Masumeh
این جمله، جمله ای است بسیار معروف که:
So many books, so little time
که معنایش اینطور است که: آه که کتاب ها چه قدر زیادند و زمان چه اندازه کم.
این کتاب، در حالی توسط یکی از دوستان گودریدزی معرفی شد، که کتاب هایی همچون ژرمینال، شوایک، طبل حلبی و چندین کتاب دیگر از کتابخانه و کتاب هایی مثل دکتر ژیواگو و وداع با اسلحه و چند کتاب دیگر را از دوستان امانت گرفته بودم و دو کتاب گیلیاد و خانه را آماده داشتم... مشغول خواندن کتاب پوست انداختن (که راجع به دو زوج مکزیکی است) بودم و اولویت کتاب هایی که گفتم هم، ه
...more
Masumeh
Feb 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
در واقع این کتاب یک داستان نیست. یک روایت بی پرده و واضح از زندگی یک خانواده ی مکزیکی در دل سالهای 1952-1954 و البته همراه با واگویی خاطرات تک تک شخصیتها و بیان آمال و احساسات و افکارشون هست.نویسنده یک انسان شناس هست که تونسته به شکلی خوب واقعیت زندگی این افراد رو به شکل روایت بیان کند.راستش کتاب دردناکی است. پر از خشونت،فقر و حتی گاهی پوچی زندگی انسان.گاهی تحملش سخت می شود چون می دانی که اینها قصه نیست. از طرفی همین قصه نبودنش،همین روایت تلخ و شفاف از زندگی برای جذابیتش کافی است.زندگی زنان قصه ...more
Giovaennchen Lozano
Más que una novela, es un estudio sociológico sobre una familia pobre del barrio de Tepito del D. F. en los años 50. La descripción de la pobreza, la ignorancia y las condiciones sociales de la época son desgarradoras. Lo leí hace muchos años, 16 creo, y en ese entonces parecía que el tiempo no había pasado. Hoy en día creo que muchas cosas han cambiado, pero muchas ideologías y situaciones sociales siguen siendo las mismas. Un padre ignorante que no sabe educar a sus hijos, el hacinamiento, el ...more
H. P. Reed
Sep 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Children of Sanchez is not really, as the extended title claims, the autobiography of a Mexican family. The raw material had to be organized by someone, Oscar Lewis presumably. That said, the book grabbed me and has never let me go. I had to abandon my privileged critical nature at the door, however, since to read this as a member of the American middle-class and using that critical yard-stick is to do an injustice to these people and to oneself. I had to be open to the differences in our ex ...more
Tisha
Jul 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
My father give me this book because he loved when he was young, and when i read it, i realize that is one of the best books of all the times. In the 60's mexican government call it "calumny and obscene". This book represents the reality of Mexico in past years and sadly these years, the children of sanchez openly shows, the daily life of a family struggling to survive day after day.
Highly recommended.
Farzane
Jan 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
شوهر خاله ام می گفت جوانی ربطی به سن و سال آدم ندارد. چیزی که مهم است این است که تو زندگی چقدر بدبختی سر آدم آمده باشد. می گفت:
- می دونی سن یه آدمی که موهاش خاکستری شده، چقدره؟ نه! هر تار مویی برا خودش داستانی داره ... سرنوشتی داره و عاقبتی. موهای سفید مال بدبختی های زندگی است، مال شکست ها، مال گرگهای زیادی است که دور و ور خودت دیدی.



Amber
Feb 28, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
I was excited to read the book, but quit halfway through. I read quite a bit, but got mucked down by the severe dysfunction of the family and the lack of indication that anything was being gained. I'm a fan of Latin America in general and am willing to toil quite a bit, but I just couldn't do it this time.
Alejandra Mg
Mar 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
No existe mexicano que sea incapaz de sentirse relacionado con alguno de los personajes.
No existe mexicano incapaz de desconocer su dolor o su origen
No existe mexicano incapaz de entender las situaciones
No existe mexicano que no sea parte de este libro.
Luz-Maria
Mar 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I was so floored by this book. Even though it was written years ago, it grabs you in and keeps you. It is kind of sad (to me anyway)......but it's a great story of a family in the slums of the Motherland.
Shahed
Feb 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
من نسخه چاپ دوم سازمان انتشارات جاویدان را که در 600 صفحه در بهار سال 1364 شمسی (1985 میلادی) منتشر شده است، خوانده ام
Luis Fernando Franco
Que libro tan... duro

Cuando me lo recomendaron pensé que sería una novela costumbrista con tintes cómicos. Que lejos está mi percepción de lo que encontré.

El libro es un estudio etnográfico de la sociedad de clase baja de los años 60's en la Ciudad de México, cuenta la historia de los hijos de Sánchez en la voz de sus cuatro hijos: Manuel, Roberto, Consuelo y Marta. El prólogo y el epílogo son de Jesús Sánchez, el padre natural de los cuatro.

A veces, desde nuestra clase media, solemos decir que
...more
Victoria
Jan 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Buen libro!
Escrito de tal manera, que puede parecer una novela, sin embargo no lo es: es un estudio que hizo un Antropólogo Social de EEUU en México, Oscar Lewis, donde se adentró a las vecindades para analizar el modo de vida de la clase pobre en la ciudad, en concreto en la Ciudad de México.

El libro es de la Familia Sánchez, Jesús y sus cuatro hijos mayores (Manuel, Roberto, Consuelo y Marta) donde narran sus vidas desde la infancia hasta ya adultos, donde pueden leerse partes de la misma hi
...more
Emmanuel Medina
Sep 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Inmensa. Nostálgica. Poderosa. Demodelora. Triste. Desolada. Es la pobreza como poderosa protagonista de este estudio antropológico vuelto mito y libro maldito donde la familia Sánchez cuenta su historia vuelta un árbol donde las ramas son la vasta miseria que cubre sus vidas. Oscar Lewis, antropólogo estadounidense, es un escucha paciente y deja que las palabras de un padre y sus cuatro hijos cuenten el relato de millones de mexicanos que, desde su aparición en 1964, siguen tratando de sobreviv ...more
Debra Anne
Jun 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read this book 20 some years ago and it never turned me loose. Just re-read it and it is as compelling as I remember it. If you feel something for Mexico beyond the level of tourist, this book will take you there. This book was written in 1961, but I suspect that things have not changed all that much. But beyond being about a poor Mexican family, it is the story of a human family, made of human beings who who cannot see beyond their own sorrow in order to enlist each other's help in their desper ...more
Nancy Rojas
Oct 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hace algunos años tuve oportunidad de leer este libro gracias a un trabajo de la Universidad.

Esta obra sufrió la censura por parte de algunos sectores de la "moral y buenas costumbres" porque decían que "hablaba pestes de México". Oscar Lewis la llama "cultura de la pobreza" y la define a partir de desmenuzar el estilo de vida de una familia humilde, que vive en un espacio muy reducido.

Es una crónica muy cruda sobre la realidad de algunos sectores sociales en nuestro país. Para entender esta nov
...more
Hung-ya
Jul 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
For me personally, The Children of Sanchez is a book about humanity. It shows us the positiveness and its opposite; selfishness and broad loves; violence and kindness; greed and satisfaction; falling and dreaming; slyness and integrity; weakness and brevity; pride and humbleness, etc. It becomes harder and harder for one to be judgmental to any character in the book, or to anyone we know of in real life for that matter. Who are we to judge people at the end of the day? We can never know what is ...more
Thing Two
Oscar Lewis took a tape recorder with him when he interviewed the Sanchez family of Mexico City in the 1950's. Jesus Sanchez was a widower with four children to raise - Roberto, Manuel, Consuelo, and Marta. Lewis interviews the children, now adults, who hold nothing back when expressing their hostility towards Jesus, each other, police, the government, and life in general.

I grew up listening to the soundtrack of the movie made from this anthropological study. It's fascinating to me to, now, rea
...more
Reza Eskandary
Oct 30, 2016 rated it liked it
Although it's a great ethnographic documentary, but I'm not completely satisfied. I think that Oscar Lewis could not make his audiences sure about his honesty. Especially when Manuel and Consuelo are worshiping American culture. It's a little bit teasing for me. Maybe I'm wrong and these things are exactly as the same as their reality, but it's still hard to believe for me.
Anyways, I do appreciate Lewis' effort to gather this huge amount of data and organize them in a story-formed documentary.
Chi Chi
May 11, 2010 rated it it was ok
I really enjoyed Pedro Martinez, because it lead some insight into the Mexican Revolution, Aztec heritage, Mexico City, etc. Children of Sanchez should have, in theory, given the reader insight into growing up poor in Mexico City from approximately the '30s-'50s. In reality, all I could think was that this family was a collection of some of the worst human beings that I've ever come across. Lying, cheating, beating, robbing, etc. The only thing that made this book more depressing was that it was ...more
Stuart Turnbull
Aug 17, 2012 rated it liked it
All in all a good read. Although, the four-children narrative can often be repetitive and a little heavy going. Part 2 particularly seemed quite drawn out. Part 3 provided both the content and rhythm to keep going to the end.

Very interesting piece in term of an exposé of impoverished Mexican family life. I would question whether some of the content has been sensationalised by the contributors or the author to exaggerate the barbarism of everyday life...
Eduardo De
Sep 07, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Sons of Sanchez is a very mature book. Not mature in the way of sex and all that stuff. It is mature in the way the book tells the story. The story is aobut a familys luck. It is a very sad story but that is how life is. I wouldnt recommend this book to much people but I would to those who like to read about life. Personally I thought it was an ok book. Neverhteless, if you think you want to know the truth to some peoples misery, then read the book. ...more
Teddy Carter
Jul 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a record of the lives of several generations of a lower class family in Mexico. Reads quite easily and authentically. It was fascinating to read about the intimate details of their daily lives - their impressions of the world, and their living conditions, down to the food they ate each day.
Kara Jacobs
Aug 04, 2009 rated it really liked it
I read this book as an adolescent, and I still love it, perhaps partly for nostalgic reasons. In its day, it was revolutionary--using anthropological methods to get some big fat slices of a poor family's life in Mexico D.F. Okay, maybe it does go on a ittle too much in parts, but it sure gives you a good feeling for what life was like for those people.
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