Race and Racism in Literature

Front Cover
Greenwood Publishing Group, 2005 - Literary Criticism - 154 pages

Issues of race and racism permeate American society and are of central concern to students and teachers. The chapters in this reference explore how these issues have been addressed in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Native Son, The House on Mango Street, Ceremony, and other major novels widely read by high school students. The works discussed reflect racial issues from a range of cultural perspectives. Each chapter is devoted to a particular novel and provides a plot summary, an overview of the work's historical background, a literary analysis, and suggestions for further reading.

Issues of race and racism have long permeated American society and continue to be among the most important social concerns today. This volume explores how racial issues have been treated in a dozen major novels widely read by high school students and undergraduates. The works discussed are from different historical periods and reflect a range of cultural perspectives, including African American, Latino, Native American, Asian American, Italian American, Jewish American, and Jewish-Arab experiences.

The volume begins with an introductory essay on race and racism in literature. Each of the chapters that follow examines a particular novel, including:

; The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

; Native Son

; The House on Mango Street

; Ceremony

; The Chosen

; And others.

Each chapter includes a plot summary, an overview of the work's historical background, a discussion of overt and subtle racism in the novel, and suggestions for further reading.

 

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Contents

Mark Twain The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn 1885
1
Richard Wright Native Son 1940
13
Harper Lee To Kill a Mockingbird 1960
25
Jose Antonio Villarreal Pocho 1959
37
Sandra Cisneros The House on Mango Street 1984
49
Margaret Craven I Heard the Owl Call My Name 1973
61
Leslie Marmon Silko Ceremony 1977
73
Arlene J Chai The Last Time I Saw Mother 1995
87
Nora Okja Keller Fox Girl 2002
99
Rita Ciresi Sometimes I Dream in Italian 2000
111
Chaim Potok The Chosen 1967
123
Amy Wilentz Martyrs Crossing 2001
135
Selected Bibliography
147
Index
149
Copyright

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About the author (2005)

Charles E. Wilson, Jr. is University Professor and Professor of English at Old Dominion University. His previous publications include Walter Mosley: A Critical Companion (2003) and Gloria Naylor: A Critical Companion (2001), both available from Greenwood Press.

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