Revisiting Racialized Voice
African American Ethos in Language and Literature
Publication Year: 2007
Pointing to the intersection of African American identity, literature, and rhetoric, Revisiting Racialized Voice begins to construct rhetorically workable yet ideologically flexible definitions of black voice. Holmes maintains that political pressure to embrace“ color blindness” endangers scholars’ ability to uncover links between racialized discourses of the past and those of the present, and he calls instead for a reassessment of the material realities and theoretical assumptions race represents and with which it has been associated.
Published by: Southern Illinois University Press
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Title Page, Copyright Page
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...ition studies, from the emergence of “The Students’ Right to Their Own Lan-guage” in 1974 until the present. The field of rhetoric and compositionhas also produced a number of significant works that explore the richhistory of African American oratory and literacy, Shirley Wilson Logan’s“We Are Coming,” Jacqueline Jones Royster’s Traces of a Stream, and...
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...undertaking, W. Ross Winterowd and Keith Gilyard are at the forefront.Some of Winterowd’s skepticism about rhetorical theories that rely tooheavily on elusive metaphors has rubbed off on me, a former doctoralstudent of his. I have also adapted (decidedly beyond his original intent,I am sure) Ross’s belief that scholarship in rhetoric and composition can...
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...in terms of two highly charged concepts: “voice” and “race.” This evo-lution can be traced in part by discussing the dilemma that FrederickDouglass faces as he strives to mediate between the Romantic, or tran-scendental, voice Emerson posits and the public voice Caleb Bingham ex-plicates in The Columbian Orator. Like other writers during the Ameri-...
1. The Color of Literacy: Race, Self, and the Public Ethos
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...called an “inner public,” voice. Frederick Douglass was restricted by hisefforts to appropriate a transracial public voice, despite his attempts tobecome an Emersonian “representative man.” By the end of this chap-ter, I will have introduced how gender further complicated this restric-tion for women of color, like Frances E. W. Harper. Selected works of...
2. From Reading Race to Race as a Way of Reading
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...erative terms (race and voice) are elusive and culturally charged. Indeed,all literal and many figurative ways of describing race in America havebeen flawed because race remained an object to be interpreted or readrather than a way of reading culture. From the late nineteenth to earlytwentieth century, these flawed views evolved into codified interconnec-...
3. Chesnutt’s Reconstruction of Race and Dialect
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...sideration of racialized voice, to begin thinking through race as a wayof reading American culture and constructing authorial ethos. In the firstplace, his literary career nearly spans the historical period surveyed inthis book, although he was more active from the 1880s through the early1900s and produced fewer writings during and after the Harlem Renais-...
4. Of Color and Culture: Du Bois’s Evolving Perspectives on Race
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Chesnutt’s certainty surpassed that of his younger, formally educatedfriend, W. E. B. Du Bois. I partly question Chesnutt’s certainty, while Iremain struck by Du Bois’s evolving perspectives on race. Throughouthis life, Du Bois affirms—through dozens of articles, essays, and severalbooks—particular constructions of race, only to subvert them later. This...
5. “Reading My Words but Not My Mind”: Hurston’s Ironic Voice
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...sion of black voice. Like Chesnutt and Du Bois, she affirmed the valueof African American folk culture. Unlike either of them, she did so with-out implying any underlying inferiority of that culture. Like her oldercolleagues, she contested traditional ideas about race, but she did so asan individual, without presuming to define racial identity for anyone else....
6. The Rhetoric of Black Voice: Implications for Composition Pedagogy
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THE METAPHOR “BLACK VOICE,” WHETHER APPLIED to a journalist,a novelist, or a student writer, is based on two elusive ideas: voice andrace. Hence, any concrete conclusions about the nature and function ofblack voice are questionable at best. Without this metaphor, however,one can appropriate a distorted view of both the material import and...
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Works Cited and Consulted
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David G. Holmes is an associate professor of English and the directorof the English composition program at Pepperdine University. A 1995recipient of the Scholars for the Dream Award, he has had some of hisessays published in the CLA Journal, the Journal of Teaching Writing,and the anthology Race, Rhetoric, and Composition, edited by Keith...
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Page Count: 144
Publication Year: 2007
Edition: 1st Edition