Begin Here: Reading Asian North American Autobiographies of Childhood

Front Cover
University of Hawaii Press, 2007 - History - 234 pages
0 Reviews
An analytically innovative work, Begin Here widens the current critical focus of Asian North American literary studies by proposing an integrated thematic and narratological approach to the practice of autobiography. It demonstrates how Asian North American memoirs of childhood challenge the construction and performative potential of national experiences. This understanding influences theoretical approaches to ethnic life writing, expanding the boundaries of traditional autobiography by negotiating narrative techniques and genre and raising complex questions about self-representation and the construction of cultural memory. By examining the artistic project of some fifty Asian North American writers who deploy their childhood narratives in the representation of the individual processes of self-identification and negotiation of cultural and national affiliation, this work provides a comprehensive overview of Asian North American autobiographies of childhood published over the last century. Importantly, it also attends to new ways of writing autobiographies, employing comics; blending verse, prose, diaries, and life writing for children; and using relational approaches to self-identification, among others.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

To Begin Here
7
The Asian Childhood Writing Beginnings
32
Cultural Revolutions and Takeovers War as Structure
66
The Liminal Childhood Biraciality as Narrative Position
82
Citizens or Denizens Inscribing the Tropes of Asian North Americanization
110
In North America Formulating Experience
136
The Childhood for Children The Cultural Experience of the Early Reader
156
Rewriting the Childhood
183
Notes
187
Works Cited
207
Index
223
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 15 - Caribbean identities always have to be thought of in terms of the dialogic relationship between these two axes. The one gives us some grounding in, some continuity with, the past. The second reminds us that what we share is precisely the experience of a profound discontinuity: the peoples...
Page 2 - is a second reading of experience, and it is truer than the first because it adds to experience itself consciousness of...

About the author (2007)

Rocio G. Davis is associate professor of American and Postcolonial Literatures at the University of Navarra.

Bibliographic information