In this Book

summary

Textual Mothers/Maternal Texts focuses on mothers as subjects and as writers who produce auto/biography, fiction, and poetry about maternity. International contributors examine the mother without child, with child, and in her multiple identities as grandmother, mother, and daughter.

The collection examines how authors use textual spaces to accept, negotiate, resist, or challenge traditional conceptions of mothering and maternal roles, and how these texts offer alternative practices and visions for mothers. Further, it illuminates how textual representations both reflect and help to define or (re)shape the realities of women and families by examining how mothering and being a mother are political, personal, and creative narratives unfolding within both the pages of a book and the spaces of a life. The range of chapters maps a shift from the daughter-centric stories that have dominated the maternal tradition to the matrilineal and matrifocal perspectives that have emerged over the last few decades as the mother’s voice moved from silence to speech.

Contributors make aesthetic, cultural, and political claims and critiques about mothering and motherhood, illuminating in new and diverse ways how authors and the protagonists of the texts “read” their own maternal identities as well as the maternal scripts of their families, cultures, and nations in their quest for self-knowledge, agency, and artistic expression.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
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  1. Frontmatter
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  1. Contents
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  1. Acknowledgements
  2. pp. ix-xii
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  1. Introduction: Maternal Literatures in Text and Tradition: Daughter-Centric, Matrilineal, and Matrifocal Perspectives
  2. pp. 1-28
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  1. Part 1: Maternal Absence
  2. pp. 29-30
  1. 1. Aberrant, Absent, Alienated: Reading the Maternal in Jane Urquhart’s First Two Novels, The Whirlpool and Changing Heaven
  2. pp. 31-46
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  1. 2. Motherless Daughters: The Absent Mothers in Margaret Atwood
  2. pp. 47-62
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  1. 3. Writing about Abusive Mothers: Ethics and Auto/biography
  2. pp. 63-78
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  1. 4. “Red Mother”: The Missing Mother Plot as Double Mystery in Louise Erdrich’s Fiction
  2. pp. 79-94
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  1. 5. “This was her punishment”: Jew, Whore, Mother in the Fiction of Adele Wiseman and Lilian Nattel
  2. pp. 95-108
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  1. Part 2: Maternal Ambivalence
  2. pp. 109-110
  1. 6. Eden Robinson’s “Dogs in Winter”: Parodic Extremes of Mothering
  2. pp. 112-124
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  1. 7. Subverting the Saintly Mother: The Novels of Gabrielle Poulin
  2. pp. 125-140
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  1. 8. “Opaque with confusion and shame”: Maternal Ambivalence in Rita Dove’s Poetry
  2. pp. 141-156
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  1. 9. Maternal Blitz: Harriet Lovatt as Postpartum Sufferer in Doris Lessing’s The Fifth Child
  2. pp. 157-168
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  1. 10. We Need to Talk about Gender: Mothering and Masculinity in Lionel Shriver’s We Need to Talk about Kevin
  2. pp. 169-184
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  1. Part 3: Maternal Agency
  2. pp. 185-186
  1. 11. Narrating Maternal Subjectivity: Memoirs from Motherhood
  2. pp. 187-202
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  1. 12. The Motherhood Memoir and the “New Momism”: Biting the Hand That Feeds You
  2. pp. 203-214
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  1. 13. “I had to make a future, willful, voluble, lascivious”: Minnie Bruce Pratt’s Disruptive Lesbian Maternal Narratives
  2. pp. 215-226
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  1. 14. Lesbian Mothering in Contemporary French Literature
  2. pp. 227-240
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  1. 15. But She’s a Mom! Sex, Motherhood, and the Poetry of Sharon Olds
  2. pp. 241-252
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  1. 16. (Grand)mothering “Children of the Apocalypse”: A Post-postmodern Ecopoetic Reading of Margaret Laurence’s The Diviners
  2. pp. 253-270
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  1. Part 4: Maternal Communication
  2. pp. 271-272
  1. 17. Colonialism’s Impact on Mothering: Jamaica Kincaid’s Rendering of the Mother–Daughter Split in Annie John
  2. pp. 273-286
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  1. 18. Mother to Daughter: Muted Maternal Feminism in the Fiction of Sandra Cisneros
  2. pp. 287-302
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  1. 19. Cracking (Mother) India
  2. pp. 303-316
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  1. 20. Asian American Mothering in the Absence of Talk Story: Obasan and Chorus of Mushrooms
  2. pp. 317-332
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  1. 21. Baby, Boo-Boo, and Bobs: The Matrilineal Auto/biographies of Zelda Sayre Fitzgerald, Frances Scott Fitzgerald, and Eleanor Lanahan
  2. pp. 333-350
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  1. 22. Revelations and Representations: Birth Stories and Motherhood on the Internet
  2. pp. 351-366
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  1. Coda: “Stories to Live By”: Maternal Literatures and Motherhood Studies
  2. pp. 367-374
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  1. Notes on the Contributors
  2. pp. 375-378
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 379-387
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Additional Information

ISBN
9781554582921
Related ISBN
9781554581801
MARC Record
OCLC
649833629
Pages
402
Launched on MUSE
2012-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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