The Invention of Ethnicity

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Oxford University Press, 1989 - Literary Criticism - 294 pages
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This important new collection of interdisciplinary essays sets out to chart the cultural construction of ethnicity as embodied in American ethnic literature. Looking at a diverse set of texts, the contributors place the subject in broad historical and dynamic contexts, focusing on the larger
systems within which ethnic distinctions emerge and obtain recognition. It provides a new critical framework for understanding not only ethnic literature, but also the underlying psychological, historical, social, and cultural forces. Table of Contents: On the Fourth of July in Sitka, Ishmael
Reed. Introduction: The Invention of Ethnicity, Werner Sollors. An American Writer, Richard Rodriguez. A Plea for Fictional Histories and Old-Time Jewesses, Alide Cagidemetrio. Ethnicity as Festive Culture: Nineteenth-Century German-America on Parade, Kathleen Conzen. Defining the Race,
1890-1930, Judith Stein. Anzia Yezierska and the Making of an Ethnic American Self, Mary Dearborn. Deviant Girls and Dissatisfied Women: A Sociologist's Tale, Carla Cappeti. Ethnic Trilogies: A Genealogical and Generational Poetics, William Boelhower. Blood in the Market Place: The Business of
Family in the Godfather Narratives, Thomas Ferraro. Comping for Count Basie, Albert Murray. Is Ethnicity Obsolete, Ishmael Reed, Andrew Hope, Shawn Wong, and Bob Callahan.
 

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Contents

An American Writer
3
A Plea for Fictional Histories and OldTime Jewesses
14
NineteenthCentury German America on Parade
44
Defining the Race 18901930
77
Anzia Yezierska and the Making of an Ethnic American Self
105
A Sociologists Tale
124
A Genealogical and Generational Poetics
158
The Business of Family in the Godfather Narratives
176
Comping for Count Basie
209
Is Ethnicity Obsolete?
226
Notes
237
List of Contributors
287
Index
291
Copyright

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About the author (1989)

Werner Sollors is at Harvard University.

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