Queen of a Sun-Drenched Land
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Queen of a Sun-Drenched Land centers around Ramona Santos Riojas, a graduate student of animal science at the University of Sao Paulo. She enjoys her studies and is eager to discover the newest innovations in the field of agriculture, but she still feels guilty about the life she left behind at her family’s farm on the Parana River floodplain, especially considering that her father took her leaving for school as a personal betrayal. When her father’s death forces her to return home and exposes the truth, that the farm is failing, in part due to a devastating disease sweeping through their cattle herds. She is forced to go to Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas, following a professor she met in the past who may have clues regarding the disease. Once in Texas, she has to contend with a vastly different culture, language barriers, and isolation— in addition to the fact that she can see and interact with entities no one else can see, figures from myth and lore. She will eventually discover that she is more closely linked to the myth of a lua, the moon goddess, than she ever imagined, and this special link could be the key to saving the farm. This creative work examines the way traditional Brazilian culture influences the lives of modern Brazilians, and also how living and studying in a culture different from one’s own can affect a person’s connection to their home as well as psychological wellbeing.
Aggie Creative Collective
Thomas, Eliza (2019). Queen of a Sun-Drenched Land. Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from