Skip to main content

Jimenez biography

Dr. Francisco Jimenez

Short Biography

Francisco Jiménez immigrated with his family to California from Tlaquepaque, Mexico, and as a child he worked in the fields of California. He is currently the Fay Boyle Professor in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, and director of the Ethnic Studies Program at Santa Clara University. Having received his B.A. from SCU and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Latin American literature from Columbia University under a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, he has served on various professional boards and commissions, including the California Council for the Humanities, Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities (WASC), the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, Santa Clara University Board of Trustees and the Far West Lab for Educational Research and Development. He has published and edited several books on Mexican and Mexican American literature, and his stories have been published in over 50 textbooks and anthologies of literature.

He was selected the 2002 U.S. Professor of the Year by CASE and Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

His collection of autobiographical short stories, The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child (the University of New Mexico Press, 1997; Houghton Mifflin, 1999; Scholastic Press, 2000), was selected a Booklist Editors’ Choice 1997, and has received several literary awards: the Boston Globe Horn Book Award for Fiction; the Americas Award; the California Library Association John and Patricia Beatty Award; a Jane Addams Honor Book Award; a New York Public Library 1999 Book for the Teen-Age; an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults, the FOCAL Award given by the Los Angeles Public Library System and the Reading the World Award given by the University of San Francisco.

The Circuit has been published in Chinese by The Eastern Publishing Company in Taiwan and it will be published in Japanese in 2003. The Pacific Conservatory for the Performing Arts adapted portions of the book for a one-act play, which has been performed in various schools and colleges in California. Audio Bookshelf has published a recording by Adrian Vargas (Cassette and CD) of the book in both English and Spanish (January 2001). It was chosen for the Woodland Reads: One Book, One Community Reading Program by Woodland, California, spring of 2002, and by Napa County Reads, a community-wide reading program for fall, 2003.

His children’s book, La Mariposa won a Parent’s Choice Recommended Award, made the Americas Commended List and was a Smithsonian’s Notable Book for Children. It is published in both an English and Spanish edition by Houghton Mifflin.

The College Division and Trade Division of Houghton Mifflin published Cajas de cartón, his Spanish translation of The Circuit.

His book, The Christmas Gift/El regalo de Navidad, an illustrated bilingual book for children, received a starred review in Publisher’s Weekly, selected a Notable Children's Book by the American Library Association, Américas Commanded List Award and the Cuffie Award from Publisher’s Weekly for “Best Treatment of a Social Issue.”

Breaking Through, the sequel to The Circuit (Houghton Mifflin, 2001). was selected a Booklist Editors’ Choice, an American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults, a Smithsonian’s Notable Book for Children and Young Adults, a New York Public Library Book for the Teen-Age, a Notable Books for a Global Society, CBC-Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, a Parents’ Choice Award, a Choice List of Books for 2002 from Children’s and Young Adult Literature, an American Booksellers Association Pick of the Lists, the American Library Association’s Pura Bupré Authors Honor Book Award, the Tomás Rivera Mexican American Book Award, and the Américas Award. It was selected for the William Allen White Children’s and Young Adult Book Award 2003-2004 Master List. It was also selected for the Silicon Valley Reads: One Book, One Community Reading Program for the winter, 2003. Houghton Mifflin published his Spanish translation of Breaking Through in 2002 under the title Senderos fronterizos. Recorded Books, Inc. released an audiocassette recording of it in 2003.