MELUS

A journal concentrating on multi-ethnic American literature for the academic audience.

Articles from Vol. 26, No. 2, Summer

"A Long Missing Part of Itself": Bringing Lucille Clifton's Generations into American Literature
Poet Lucille Clifton recently said that her early writings form part of a movement that "brought to American literature a long missing part of itself" (Rowell 67). Her 1976 memoir, Generations, traces her genealogy back to the African matriarch first...
Biracial/bicultural Identity in the Writings of Sui Sin Far
At the turn into the twentieth century, American culture witnessed related literary and political shifts through which marginalized voices gained increased strength despite the severe racism that informed US laws and social interaction. Many authors...
Cultural Politics and Chinese-American Female Subjectivity: Rethinking Kingston's Woman Warrior
Asian American cultural studies as part of US minority studies has witnessed an increasing interest in questioning the formation of the ethnic canon and critiquing institutional functions which some specific Asian American literary texts have performed...
Lost in Nostalgia: The Autobiographies of Eva Hoffman and Richard Rodriguez
In "The Plural Self: The Politicization of Memory and Form in Three American Ethnic Autobiographies," in which she compares N. Scott Momaday's The Names, Gloria Anzaldua's Borderlands/La Frontera, and Audre Lorde's Zami: A New Spelling of My Name,...
"Narratives of Self" and the Abdication of Authority in Wideman's Philadelphia Fire
Outside the confines of academia, John Edgar Wideman has achieved a celebrity few avant-garde or African American writers could claim. Although most of his novels are radically innovative and more or less inaccessible to readers lacking at least a...
New Transnational Identities in Judith Ortiz Cofer's Autobiographical Fiction
Writing at the beginning of the twentieth century, Russian-Jewish immigrant Mary Antin implicitly asserted that migration offered her access to a clearly defined national identity of her own choice. This choice entailed a decision between two national...
Novel Paesans: The Reconstruction of Italian-American Male Identity in Anthony Valerio's Conversation with Johnny and Robert Viscusi's Astoria
Do we need to rehabilitate the paesan? What I mean is, do we need to reconstruct the public identity of the Italian-American man? If we survey the great cocktail party of the American literary scene, we recognize in the crowd the faces of many Italian-American...
Oral Narrative as Short Story Cycle: Forging Community in Edwidge Danticat's Krik? Krak!
Only when ethnic literature liberates its sources of meaning from hegemonic impositions and begins to inform theory and subvert traditional signifying strategies can it begin to reconfigure cultural interpretation. As though responding to this challenge,...
Refracted Identity(ies) in Louis Chu's Eat a Bowl of Tea: Insularity as Impotence
"Exile is sometimes better than staying behind or getting out: but only sometimes." Edward Said, "Reflections on Exile" (360) Louis Chu's novel Eat a Bowl of Tea (1961) places the reader in the isolated, bachelor-dominated culture of New York's...
The Making and Unmaking of Whiteness: Richard Wright's Rite of Passage
Richard Wright's Rite of Passage (1994) unmasks whiteness as a mark of ideology and racial privilege. Valerie Babb suggests that "a distinction should be made between white skin--the common pigmentation we associate with those we call white--and whiteness:...
The (Re)birth of Mona Changowitz: Rituals and Ceremonies of Cultural Conversion and Self-Making in Mona in the Promised Land
Much has been written of the cultural alternatives of continuity, rapture, or invention in recent years. It has become a pervasive thread that runs not only throughout the cultural production of ethnic "intracultures" such as the Asian American one,...
The Significance of the "Multi" in "Multiethnic Literatures of the US"
Presidential Address March 2, 2001 MELUS 2001 Conference Knoxville, Tennessee "She starts up the stairs to bed. `Don't get me up with the rest in the morning.' `But I thought you were having midterms.' `Oh, those,' she comes back in, kisses me, and...
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