The Crystal Frontier

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"La frontera de cristal" redirects here. For the telenovela, see La frontera de cristal (telenovela).
The Crystal Frontier
Author Carlos Fuentes
Original title 'La frontera de cristal'
Country Mexico
Language Spanish
Genre Novel
Publisher Harvest Books
Publication date
Published in English
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages 280
ISBN 978-0-15-600620-0
OCLC 38752885

The Crystal Frontier (Spanish: La frontera de cristal) is a 1995 novel written by Mexican writer Carlos Fuentes. The title can also be translated as "The glass border".


A series of stories which explores relationships between people of Mexico and the United States. Large parts of the USA were once part of Mexico, all the way from California to Texas, and so the Mexican people feel a special connection with that area. Both countries depend on each other for trade and culture, and many people divide their time and their lives between both sides of the border.

In the second story a Mexican student goes to medical school in New York state, where he finds that people there know nothing about the conditions in Mexico, but feel ready to make judgements.


The novel is made up of nine stories which are, in order:

1. La capitalina (translated as "The Girl from the Capital")

2. La pena (translated as "The Pain")

3. El despojo (translated as "The Loot" or "The Debris")

4. La raya del olvido (translated as "The Line of Oblivion")

5. Malintzin de las maquilas (translated as "Malintzin of the Factories")

6. Las amigas (translated as "The Friends")

7. La frontera de cristal (translated as "The Crystal Frontier" or "The Glass Border")

8. La apuesta (translated as "The Bet")

9. Río Grande, río Bravo (translated as "Rio Grande, Bravo River")

See also[edit]