Overview

The essays in Tracing the Autobiographical work with the literatures of several nations to reveal the intersections of broad agendas (for example, national ones) with the personal, the private, and the individual. Attending to ethics, exile, tyranny, and hope, the contributors listen for echoes and murmurs as well as authoritative declarations. They also watch for the appearance of auto/biography in unexpected places, tracing patterns from materials that have been left behind. Many of the essays return to the ...

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Tracing the Autobiographical

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Overview

The essays in Tracing the Autobiographical work with the literatures of several nations to reveal the intersections of broad agendas (for example, national ones) with the personal, the private, and the individual. Attending to ethics, exile, tyranny, and hope, the contributors listen for echoes and murmurs as well as authoritative declarations. They also watch for the appearance of auto/biography in unexpected places, tracing patterns from materials that have been left behind. Many of the essays return to the question of text or traces of text, demonstrating that the language of autobiography, as well as the textualized identities of individual persons, can be traced in multiple media and sometimes unlikely documents, each of which requires close textual examination. These “unlikely documents” include a deportation list, an art exhibit, reality TV, Web sites and chat rooms, architectural spaces, and government memos, as well as the more familiar literary genres—a play, the long poem, or the short story.

Interdisciplinary in scope and contemporary in outlook, Tracing the Autobiographical is a welcome addition to autobiography scholarship, focusing on non-traditional genres and on the importance of location and place in life writing.

Read the chapter “Gender, Nation, and Self-Narration: Three Generations of Dayan Women in Palestine/Israel” by Bina Freiwald on the Concordia University Library Spectrum Research Repository website.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781554587162
  • Publisher: Wilfrid Laurier University Press
  • Publication date: 10/22/2009
  • Series: Life Writing Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Marlene Kadar is an associate professor in humanities and women’s studies at York University, and the former director of the graduate programme in interdisciplinary studies. Her publications include Essays on Life Writing, which won the Gabrielle Roy Prize (English) for 1992. Kadar’s research interests include the politics of life writing, especially as represented in survivor narratives; the construction of privilege and knowledge in women’s life writing; and, Hungarian and Romani autobiography and historical accounts, biographical traces and fragments.

Susanna Egan is a professor in the department of English at the University of British Columbia. Her most recent monograph is titled Mirror Talk: Genres of Crisis in Contemporary Autobiography.

Jeanne Perreault is a professor in the Department of English at the University of Calgary and is the author of Writing Selves: Contemporary Feminist Autography.

Linda Warley teaches in the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Waterloo. She has published articles in journals such as Canadian Literature, a/b: Auto/Biography Studies, and Reading Canadian Autobiography, a special issue of Essays on Canadian Writing.

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Table of Contents

Introduction : tracing the autobiographical : unlikely documents, unexpected places 1
Katie.com : my story : memoir writing, the Internet, and embodied discursive agency 9
Reading the autobiographical in personal home pages 25
Reality TV has spoken : auto/biography matters 43
Performing the auto/biographical pact : towards a theory of identity in performance 65
Domestic space and the idea of home in auto/biographical practices 81
The shifting grounds of exile and home in Daphne Marlatt's Steveston 97
Law stories as life stories : Jeanette Lavell, Yvonne Bedard, and Halfbreed 117
Muriel Rukeyser : egodocuments and the ethics of propaganda 143
Gender, nation, and self-narration : three generations of Dayan women in Palestine/Israel 165
Giving pain a place in the world : aboriginal women's bodies in Australian stolen generations autobiographical narratives 189
Circular journeys and glass bridges : the geography of postmemory 205
The devouring : traces of Roma in the Holocaust : no tattoo, sterilized body, gypsy girl 223
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