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Subjects and Citizens: Nation, Race, and Gender from Oroonoko to Anita Hill / Edition 1

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Overview


Focusing on intersecting issues of nation, race, and gender, this volume inaugurates new models for American literary and cultural history. Subjects and Citizens reveals the many ways in which a wide range of canonical and non-canonical writing contends with the most crucial social, political, and literary issues of our past and present.
Defining the landscape of the New American literary history, these essays are united by three interrelated concerns: ideas of origin (where does "American literature" begin?), ideas of nation (what does "American literature" mean?), and ideas of race and gender (what does "American literature" include and exclude and how?). Work by writers as diverse as Aphra Behn, James Fenimore Cooper, Edgar Allan Poe, Frances Harper, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Herman Melville, William Faulkner, Harriet Jacobs, Frederick Douglass, Abraham Lincoln, Bharati Mukherjee, Booker T. Washington, Mark Twain, Kate Chopin, Américo Paredes, and Toni Morrison are discussed from several theoretical perspectives, using a variety of methodologies. Issues of the "frontier" and the "border" as well as those of coloniality and postcoloniality are explored. In each case, these essays emphasize the ideological nature of national identity and, more specifically, the centrality of race and gender to our concept of nationhood.
Collected from recent issues of American Literature, with three new essays added, Subjects and Citizens charts the new directions being taken in American literary studies.

Contributors. Daniel Cooper Alarcón, Lori Askeland, Stephanie Athey, Nancy Bentley, Lauren Berlant, Michele A. Birnbaum, Kristin Carter-Sanborn, Russ Castronovo, Joan Dayan, Julie Ellison, Sander L. Gilman, Karla F. C. Holloway, Annette Kolodny, Barbara Ladd, Lora Romero, Ramón Saldívar, Maggie Sale, Siobhan Senier, Timothy Sweet, Maurice Wallace, Elizabeth Young

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"This superb collection demonstrates the exciting new work being done in American literary history and criticism. Its many wide-ranging, richly detailed contributions are certain to shape and extend cultural and political debates about race, class, gender, and American nationhood. Subjects and Citizens is among the best books of critical and cultural studies I have read."—William E. Cain, Wellesley College
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822315391
  • Publisher: Duke University Press Books
  • Publication date: 6/28/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 536
  • Lexile: 1560L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.44 (w) x 9.16 (h) x 1.12 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Moon is Associate Professor of English at Duke University and Associate Editor of American Literature. He is the author of Disseminating Whitman: Revision and Corporeality in "Leaves of Grass."

Cathy N. Davidson is Professor of English at Duke University and Editor of American Literature. She is the author of numerous books, including Revolution and the Word: The Rise of the Novel in America.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
Letting Go Our Grand Obsessions: Notes Toward a New Literary History of the American Frontiers 9
Oroonoko's Gendered Economies of Honor/Horror: Reframing Colonial Discourses Studies in the Americas 27
Race and Sensibility in the Early Republic: Ann Eliza Bleecker and Sarah Wentworth Morton 57
Vanishing Americans: Gender, Empire, and New Historicism 87
Amorous Bondage: Poe, Ladies, and Slaves 109
Critiques from Within: Antebellum Projects of Resistance 145
Radical Configurations of History in the Era of American Slavery 169
White Slaves: The Mulatto Hero in Antebellum Fiction 195
Masculinity and Self-Performance in the Life of Black Hawk 219
Constructing the Black Masculine: Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, and the Sublimits of African American Autobiography 245
Mark Twain and the Diseases of the Jews 271
Warring Fictions: Iola Leroy and the Color of Gender 293
"Alien Hands": Kate Chopin and the Colonization of Race 319
"The Direction of the Howling": Nationalism and the Color Line in Absalom, Absalom! 345
Border Subjects and Transnational Sites: Americo Paredes's The Hammon and the Beans and Other Stories 373
Remodeling the Model Home in Uncle Tom's Cabin and Beloved 395
A Zuni Raconteur Dons the Junco Shirt: Gender and Narrative Style in the Story of Coyote and Junco 417
"We Murder Who We Were": Jasmine and the Violence of Identity 433
The Queen of America Goes to Washington City: Harriet Jacobs, Frances Harper, Anita Hill 455
The Body Politic 481
Index 497
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