MULTI-ETHNICITY AS A RESOURCE FOR THE LITERARY IMAGINATION: The Creative Achievements of Women Artists, Poets, and Novelists

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Through an analysis of culturally specific constructions of gender and spirituality in the verbal and visual texts, this study reveals syncretic presences and a new paradigm for reading. Furthermore, this project argues that these women create and install cultural citizenship, which proposes alternatives to postcolonial and global feminist paradigms.


“Dr. Rader’s project offers a vital point of entry into the innovative ways women of the Americas respond to and resist the legacies of colonialism and slavery at a time when the globalization of culture is becoming firmly entrenched in our society. Significantly, rather than propose a universalized, global feminism, this study promotes the idea that individuals inhabit multiple spaces and are influenced by such distinct forces as culturally specific traditions and beliefs.” – Dr. Pamela J. Albert.

“Dr. Rader’s engaging analyses reveal how experimentation with time, space, and self-consciousness in fiction, poetry, and documentary filmmaking produced by these writers perform, as it were, the thematic goals they pursue in their texts. Linguistic creolization, the mythography inherent to history, the multiple character of self-conception, etc., preoccupy the stories both as desirable cultural ends to be sought and as textual devices. I would like to repeat, this is comparative studies at its best.” – Prof. Adélékè Adéeko, Ohio State University

“Through thorough and innovative analysis of politics, religion, and language as found in women writers of color such as Danticat, Allen, Anzaldüa, Morrison, and others, this study deftly outlines the problems of the marginalized and the complexities of the recuperative process—as it first grounds itself in, then maneuvers away from some of the prevailing ideas and canonical interpretations of these writers.
What is presented is a new idea of multiculturalism, not as a category, but as a critical strategy that seeks to end essentialist perspectives and approaches in order to re-situate these writers and the marginalized in general within the dominant culture—to rehabilitate lost cultural identity and restore one’s “cultural citizenship.” – Prof. John R. Woznicki, Holy Family University

Table of Contents

1. Reading Twins and Two-Spirit Characters in The Woman Who Owned the Shadows and Almanac of the Dead
2. Sor Juana, La Malinche, Guadalupe, and the Santera: Iconoclastic Revisions of the Feminine
3. The New Spirit Child: Africanisms in Beloved and Daughters of the Dust
4. Haiti’s Exiled Daughters: Migrations in the Writings of Edwidge
Danticat and Myriam J. A. Chancy
Bibliography Index

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