Re-Mapping the Transnational: A Dartmouth Series in American Studies

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Re-Mapping the Transnational: A Dartmouth Series in American Studies

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An American Body | Politic

A Deleuzian Approach

Bernd Herzogenrath

A reflection on the metaphor of the body politic throughout American history Bernd Herzogenrath’s An American Body|Politic is a study of the intersection between the material, biological body and body as political and cultural metaphor in American politics, religion, literature, and popular culture. Deeply influenced by the thought of Gilles Deleuze, Herzogenrath’s approach to American culture encompasses endless possibilities and potentials, eschewing the mechanic and structural. He traipses through American history and culture, pausing to examine such varied facets as the Puritans’ “two bodies,” Anne Hutchinson and the Antinomian Controversy, Cotton Mather and smallpox, the poetics|politics of Whitman, Henry Adams’s stroll along the shores of complexity, and the Detroit-based techno music of today.

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American Studies as Transnational Practice

Turning toward the Transpacific

Yuan Shu

This wide-ranging collection brings together an eclectic group of scholars to reflect upon the transnational configurations of the field of American studies and how these have affected its localizations, epistemological perspectives, ecological imaginaries, and politics of translation. The volume elaborates on the causes of the transnational paradigm shift in American studies and describes the material changes that this new paradigm has effected during the past two decades. The contributors hail from a variety of postcolonial, transoceanic, hemispheric, and post-national positions and sensibilities, enabling them to theorize a “crossroads of cultures” explanation of transnational American studies that moves beyond the multicultural studies model.

Offering a rich and rewarding mix of essays and case studies, this collection will satisfy a broad range of students and scholars.

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The Black Pacific Narrative

Geographic Imaginings of Race and Empire between the World Wars

Etsuko Taketani

The Black Pacific Narrative: Geographic Imaginings of Race and Empire between the World Wars chronicles the profound shift in geographic imaginings that occurred in African American culture as the United States evolved into a bioceanic global power. The author examines the narrative of the “black Pacific” the literary and cultural production of African American narratives in the face of America’s efforts to internationalize the Pacific and to institute a “Pacific Community,” reflecting a vision of a hemispheric regional order initiated and led by the United States. The black Pacific was imagined in counterpoint to this regional order in the making, which would ultimately be challenged by the Pacific War. The principal subjects of study include such literary and cultural figures as James Weldon Johnson, George S. Schuyler, artists of the black Federal Theatre Project, Langston Hughes, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Walter White, all of whom afford significant points of entry to a critical understanding of the stakes of the black Pacific narrative. Adopting an approach that mixes the archival and the interpretive, the author seeks to recover the black Pacific produced by African American narratives, narratives that were significant enough in their time to warrant surveillance and suspicion, and hence are significant enough in our time to warrant scholarly attention and reappraisal.

A compelling study that will appeal to a broad, international audience of students and scholars of American studies, African American studies, American literature, and imperialism and colonialism.

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Community without Consent

New Perspectives on the Stamp Act

Zachary McLeod Hutchins

The first book-length study of the Stamp Act in decades, this timely collection draws together essays from a broad range of disciplines to provide a thoroughly original investigation of the influence of 1760s British tax legislation on colonial culture, and vice versa. While earlier scholarship has largely focused on the political origins and legacy of the Stamp Act, this volume illuminates the social and cultural impact of a legislative crisis that would end in revolution. Importantly, these essays problematize the traditional nationalist narrative of Stamp Act scholarship, offering a variety of counter identities and perspectives. Community without Consent recovers the stories of individuals often ignored or overlooked in existing scholarship, including women, Native Americans, and enslaved African Americans, by drawing on sources unavailable to or unexamined by earlier researchers.

This urgent and original collection will appeal to the broadest of interdisciplinary audiences.

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A Critical History of the New American Studies, 1970–1990

Günter H. Lenz

Starting in 2005, Günter H. Lenz began preparing a book-length exploration of the transformation of the field of American Studies in the crucial years between 1970 and 1990. As a commentator on, contributor to, and participant in the intellectual and institutional changes in his field, Lenz was well situated to offer a comprehensive and balanced interpretation of that seminal era. Building on essays he wrote while these changes were ongoing, he shows how the revolution in theory, the emergence of postmodern socioeconomic conditions, the increasing globalization of everyday life, and postcolonial responses to continuing and new forms of colonial domination had transformed American Studies as a discipline focused on the distinctive qualities of the United States to a field encompassing the many different “Americas” in the Western Hemisphere as well as how this complex region influenced and was interpreted by the rest of the world. In tracking the shift of American Studies from its exceptionalist bias to its unmanageable global responsibilities, Lenz shows the crucial roles played by the 1930s’ Left in the U.S., the Frankfurt School in Germany and elsewhere between 1930 and 1960, Continental post-structuralism, neo-Marxism, and post-colonialism. Lenz’s friends and colleagues, now his editors, present here his final backward glance at a critical period in American Studies and the birth of the Transnational.

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Dwelling in American

Dissent, Empire, and Globalization

John Muthyala

Globalization is not the Americanization of the world, argues John Muthyala. Rather, it is an uneven social, cultural, economic, and political process in which the policies and aspirations of powerful nation-states are entangled with the interests of other empires, nation-states, and communities. Dwelling in American: Dissent, Empire, and Globalization takes up a bold challenge, critiquing scholarship on American empire that views the United States as either an exceptional threat to the world or the only hope for the future. It does so in order to provincialize America, to understand it from outside the borders of nation and location, and from inside the global networks of trade, power, and culture. Using comparative frames of reference, the book makes its arguments by examining the work of a diverse range of writers including Arundhati Roy (War Talk, Power Politics), Azar Nafisi (Reading Lolita in Tehran), and Thomas Friedman (The World Is Flat).

This is an original, complex, and often bracingly counterintuitive critique of the idea of American empire that will appeal to anyone interested in understanding the complexities of globalization.

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Empire of Liberty

Power, Desire, and Freedom

Anthony Bogues

In this thoughtful and timely consideration of the nature of American power and empire, Anthony Bogues argues that America's self-presentation as the bastion of liberty is an attempt to force upon the world a single universal truth, which has the objective of eradicating the radical imagination. Central to this project of American supremacy is the elaboration and construction of a language of power in which a form of self-government appears as the form of sovereignty. Grappling with issues of power, race, slavery, violence, and the nature of postcolonial criticism and critical theory, Bogues offers reconsiderations of the writings of W. E. B. DuBois and Frantz Fanon in order to break holes in this accepted structure of empire. At its heart this is a work of radical humanistic theory that seeks to glean from the postcolonial world and empire an alternative to its imperial form of freedom.

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Horizons of Enchantment

Essays in the American Imaginary

Lene M. Johannessen

Horizons of Enchantment is about the peculiar power and exceptional pull of the imaginary in American culture. Johannessen's subject here is the almost mystical American belief in the promise and potential of the individual, or the reliance on a kind of "modern magic" that can loosely be characterized as a fundamental and unwavering faith in the secular sanctity of the American project of modernity. Among the diverse topics and cultural artifacts she examines are the Norwegian American novel A Saloonkeeper's Daughter by Drude Krog Janson, Walt Whitman's Song of Myself, Rodolfo Gonzales's I Am Joaquin, Richard Ford's The Sportwriter, Ana Menendez's In Cuba I Was a German Shepherd, essays by Samuel Huntington and Richard Rodriquez, and the 2009 film Sugar, about a Dominican baseball player trying to make it in the big leagues. In both her subject matter and perspective, Johannessen reconfigures and enriches questions of the transnational and exceptional in American studies.

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The Imaginary and Its Worlds

American Studies after the Transnational Turn

Laura Bieger

The Imaginary and Its Worlds collects essays that boldly rethink the imaginary as a key concept for cultural criticism. Addressing both the emergence and the reproduction of the social, the imaginary is ideally suited to chart the consequences of the transnational turn in American studies. Leading scholars in the field from the United States and Europe address the literary, social, and political dimensions of the imaginary, providing a methodological and theoretical groundwork for American studies scholarship in the transnational era and opening new arenas for conceptualizing formations of imaginary belonging and subjectivity. This important state-of-the-field collection will appeal to a broad constituency of humanists working to overcome methodological nationalism.

The Imaginary and Its Worlds: An Introduction * LITERARY IMAGINARIES * Imagining Cultures: The Transnational Imaginary in Postrace America - Ramon Saldivar * The Necessary Fragmentation of the (U.S.) Literary-Cultural Imaginary - Lawrence Buell * Imaginaries of American Modernism - Heinz Ickstadt * SOCIAL IMAGINARIES * William James versus Charles Taylor: Philosophy of Religion and the Confines of the Social and Cultural Imaginaries - Herwig Friedl * The Shaping of We-Group Identities in the African American Community: A Perspective of Figurational Sociology on the Cultural Imaginary - Christa Buschendorf * Russia's Californio Romance: The Other Shores of Whitman's Pacific - Lene Johannessen * Form Games: Staging Life in the Systems Epoch - Mark Seltzer * POLITICAL IMAGINARIES * Real Toads - Walter Benn Michaels * Obama Unwound: The Romanticism of Victory and the Defeat of Compromise - Christopher Newfield * Barack Obama's Orphic Mysteries - Donald E. Pease * Coda. The Imaginary and the Second Narrative: Reading as Transfer - Winfried Fluck * Contributors * Index

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In the Name of the Mother

Italian Americans, African Americans, and Modernity from Booker T. Washington to Bruce Springsteen

Samuele F. S. Pardini

In the Name of the Mother examines the cultural relationship between African American intellectuals and Italian American writers and artists, and how it relates to American blackness in the twentieth century. Samuele Pardini links African American literature to the Mediterranean tradition of the Italian immigrants and examines both against the white intellectual discourse that defines modernism in the West. This previously unexamined encounter offers a hybrid, transnational model of modernity capable of producing democratic forms of aesthetics, social consciousness, and political economy. This volume emphasizes the racial “in-betweenness” of Italian Americans rearticulated as “invisible blackness,” a view that enlarges and complicates the color-based dimensions of American racial discourse. This strikingly original work will interest a wide spectrum of scholars in American Studies and the humanities.

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