First World Third Class and Other Tales of the Global Mix

9780292706996: Paperback
Release Date: 1st July 2005

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 275

Series Texas Pan American Literature in Translation

University of Texas Press

First World Third Class and Other Tales of the Global Mix

Written by
Regina Rheda
Translated by
Adria Frizzi
David Coles
Charles A. Perrone
Introduced by
Christopher Dunn
Paperback / £22.99

Regina Rheda is a contemporary award-winning Brazilian writer whose original voice and style have won her many admirers. First World Third Class and Other Tales of the Global Mix presents some of her finest and most representative work to an English-speaking readership. Stories from the Copan Building consists of eight tales set in a famous residential building in São Paulo. The stories, like the apartment complex, are a microcosm of modern-day urban Brazil. They are witty, consistently caustic, and never predictable.

Also in this volume is the poignant and often hilarious novel First World Third Class. It depicts young middle-class professionals and artists who, as opportunities in Brazil diminished, opted to leave their country, even if it meant taking menial jobs abroad. At the center of the narrative is Rita, a thirty-year-old aspiring filmmaker who migrates to England, and then Italy. She looks for work and love in all the wrong places, moving from city to city and from bed to bed.

The last three stories in this collection also happen to be among the author's most recent. "The Enchanted Princess" is an ironic title for a postfeminist tale of a South American woman being wooed to marry an old-world gentleman who promises to take care of her every need. "The Sanctuary" concerns the living conditions of immigrant workers and farm animals. Equally piquant in nature, "The Front" deals with ecology, labor environments, and gender politics.

  • Preface: A Regina Rheda Reader—Titles, Subtitles, Versions, Reversions
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction by Christopher Dunn
  • I. Stories from the Copan Building (1994)
    • The Neighbor from Hell
    • The Cat Girl
    • Dry Spell
    • The Ghost
    • The Woman in White
    • Girlfriends
    • The Voyeuse
    • The Prostitute
  • II. First World Third Class (1996)
  • III. A Trio of Tales
    • The Enchanted Princess (1997)
    • The Sanctuary (2002)
    • The Front (2003)

REGINA RHEDA has also won awards in filmmaking in Brazil. She currently lives in northern Florida.

Adria Frizzi is a translator and critic who teaches in the Department of French and Italian at the University of Texas at Austin.

"Reading Rheda's short stories and novel has been a delightful discovery for me.... Her style is full of wit, delicious and sometimes devastating irony, and captivating poetic imagery. Her book, in short, will be hard for readers to put down."

David George, Professor of Spanish, Lake Forest College