Although many studies have been done of individual authors, at present few works exist which compare different immigrant literatures from the past and present. This work draws broad conclusions about the changes in American attitudes toward immigration and diverse cultures that are reflected in the literature. This book examines the representation of the immigrant experience in North American literature. Most of the chapters discuss the portrayal of particular ethnic groups by specific authors during a century of American and Canadian history. One essay highlights controversies among recent writers and critics concerning how their cultures should be portrayed, and the introductory and concluding essays provide historical, cultural, and literary contexts for a comparative approach to North American immigrant literature.
The expert contributors expose the reader to a variety of immigrant experiences in the literature of past and present, experiences in which the characters attempt to reconcile their ancestral heritage with that of their adopted land. Variations of three basic stances can be found in these works: the essentialist, rejecting the values of the dominant culture and resisting assimilation; the assimilationist, embracing the attitudes and behaviors of the new culture; and the hybridist, incorporating the old and new. The book additionally explores such topics as race, class, and gender, as well as the intergenerational conflict found in much immigrant literature.
Number of pages: 224
Weight: 495 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 15 mm
"The level of analysis throughout the collection is generally high, and even the more summary pieces are good introductions to noncanonical books often ignored in the classroom and in mainstream literary journals."-Choice
?The level of analysis throughout the collection is generally high, and even the more summary pieces are good introductions to noncanonical books often ignored in the classroom and in mainstream literary journals.?-Choice
?This collection of 12 essays delivers well on its title's promise....Few existing studies compare immigrant literatures from the past and present, but this book shows how current literature differs from preceding work....the collection offers a valuable comparative structure and useful analyses of the various ways that immigrants attempt to reconcile their ethnic heritage with that of their adopted country.?-Multicultural Review