E 376L • Literature of the Immigrant Experience
11:00 AM-12:30 PM
E 322 (Topic: The Immigrant Experience) MAY also be counted.
The object of the course will be to study the issues of assimilation, exclusion, acculturation, Americanism, ethnicity, monolingualism, and multiculturalism through a selection of autobiographies and works of fiction written by first or second-generation immigrants, to probe various individual experiences and to highlight their similarities and differences in time and space, and ultimately to reflect on the dynamics of American society in relation to immigration and ethnicity, both old and new. Conversely, the tale of the individual immigrant's adjustment to a new cultural environment, of his/her accommodation to a host of destabilizing societal forces will be analyzed in esthetic and didactic terms as part of the ethnic writer's double consciousness and mediating role in the process from marginal to mainstream literature.
Two essays (one in class, one out of class) 25% each
One oral presentation 30%
Pop quizzes on the readings and class participation 20%
Attendance is mandatory.
Mary Antin, The Promised Land
Abraham Cahan, The Rise of David Levinsky
Pietro Di Donato, Christ in Concrete
Piri Thomas, Down These Mean Streets
Richard Rodriguez, Hunger of Memory
Sandra Cisneros, The House on Mango Street