Visions of America since 1492

Overview

The common theme of these essays is the evolution of American cultural identities from a diverse colonial inheritance. Changing representations of what it means to be 'American' are assumed to be the consequence of shifting cross-cultural or transatlantic pressures. Since 1492 the experience of America has continually been interpreted both for and by Europeans; the colonial past constituting the prime source of introspective energies and self-conscious representations for all Americans. The collection is divided ...
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Overview

The common theme of these essays is the evolution of American cultural identities from a diverse colonial inheritance. Changing representations of what it means to be 'American' are assumed to be the consequence of shifting cross-cultural or transatlantic pressures. Since 1492 the experience of America has continually been interpreted both for and by Europeans; the colonial past constituting the prime source of introspective energies and self-conscious representations for all Americans. The collection is divided into two sections, juxtaposing colonial negotiations with 'native' Americans and the modern self-perceptions of 'native-born' Americans. The focus of the early part of the book is the vision of America that was formed through the process of colonization - with its attendant impact upon wildlife, landscapes and indigenous peoples - a vision registered in visual images and written records, as well as Western philosophical, ethnographical and aesthetic ideals.
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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
A collection of essays on the evolution of American cultural identities from a diverse colonial inheritance, divided into two sections on colonial negotiations with natives and the modern self- perceptions of native-born Americans. Topics include the process of colonization and its impact on wildlife and indigenous peoples, formation of post-colonial identity, global Americanization, European representations of the American Indian, and critical realism in the history of American art. Includes b&w illustrations. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312122812
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 9/28/1994
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 164
  • Product dimensions: 6.15 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 0.77 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
List of contributors
Introduction
Pt. 1 Cross-Cultural Interactions 1
1 European perceptions of American ecology, 1492-1612 3
2 Shifting antinomies: European representations of the American Indian since Columbus 23
3 The French in early America: religion and reality 35
4 Through native eyes? Indian history/American history 57
Pt. 2 American Introspections 73
5 Heroes and anti-heroes: (self-)perceptions of the Quebecois 75
6 The re-vision of America: European experiences and American autobiography 94
7 Critical Realism in the history of American art 111
8 Postmodern perspectives: subversions of the American Columbiad 145
Index 158
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