E 379N • Ethnic Literatures in America
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
The six novels surveyed in this course were written by authors born in the United States of foreign parents. Two of the authors are Jewish Americans, two are Mexican Americans, two are Japanese Americans; three are women, three are men. Each one has a unique personality and sensibility, but each reached into a specific social history and set of cultural traditions to create his or her own fictional world.
We will study these works not only from a literary point of view but also from a historical, political, and social perspective. We will not only study them in their specificity but also try to establish common recurrent themes and common modes of expression in working toward a definition of American ethnic fiction.
Attendance and participation 20%
Two personal papers 25% each
One final exam 30%
Chaim Potok, In The Beginning (1975)
E. L. Doctorow, World's Fair (1985)
José Antonio Villareal, Pocho (1959)
Denise Chavez, The Last of the Menu Girls (1986)
Monica Sone, Nisei Daughter (1953)
Julie Shigekuni, A Bridge Between Us (1995)