American LiteratureVol. 79 Iss. 1 (2007)
The Barbarous Voice of Democracy: American Captivity in Barbary and the Multicultural Specter
Jacob Rama Berman
Barber uses the captivity narratives of early Americans held by Barbary pirates to demonstrate an early moment of multicultural awareness and the first instance of interaction between Americans and Arabs.
How the Irish Became Japanese: Winnifred Eaton's Racial Reconstructions in a Transnational Context
Murphy's reading of Eaton's A Japanese Blossom reveals the early twentieth century shift in American racial thinking. By grounding her analysis in the background of the Russo-Japanese War, Murphy presents a compelling argument of an important transnational moment of racial restructuring.
Revising the Human: Silence, Being, and the Question of the Animal in Nightwood
Rohman's reading of Djuana Barnes' Nightwood, while occasionally impressively insightful is cumbersome to manage. Rohman attempts to pull the text in too many directions which leaves her article disjointed.
Resistance, Silence, and Placées: Charles Bon's Octoroon Mistress and Louisa Picquet
Li's quest to examine the life of free black placées, or conquibines, is ultimately frustrated by a lack of sources. However, Li's essay is worth reading because of her final section which speaks sagely to the process of recovering lost voices.
Gwendolyn Brooks, Ebony, and Postwar Race Relations
Bryant explores the relationship between African-American poet Gwendolyn Brooks and the first black magazine. The article transcends a traditional highbrow-lowbrow discussion by examining how both Brooks and Ebony managed the tenuous alliance of African Americans and white liberals.
Resisting the Cultural "Steamroller": Susan Wheeler's Source Codes
Keller provides a sound evaluation of Wheeler's Source Codes, drawing heavily from Wheeler's earlier Poetry, Mattering? While Keller does not offer anything dramatically new, her accessible analysis offers a useful entry point to Wheeler's poetry.
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