Course Title: Asian American Literature: Defining IdentitiesThat's probably still too many titles for a 300-level class, despite my cutting so many off my initial list. We'll see.
Both nations and individuals are frequently asked to define themselves -- and at times are required to do so as a matter of survival. Often their self-definition primarily reflects opposition to another -- the culture of a colonizing nation, the values of their parents. This course will provide an introduction to Asian American literature through the lens of identity-formation. We will consider some of the ways in which nations and cultures are formed, and examine how writers in a varies of genres (fiction, poetry, memoir) have attempted to define Asian-American identities. In the process, we will examine identity in terms of ethnicity, language, gender, and orientation, and engage with critical debates over the cultural poltiics of identity, representation, and authenticity.
- Asian American Dreams, Helen Zia
- The Woman Warrior, Maxine Hong Kingston
- No-No Boy, John Okada
- Contours of the Heart, Eds. Sunaina Maira and Rajini Srikanth
- The Interpreter of Maladies, Jhumpa Lahiri
- Jasmine, Bharati Mukherjee
- The Gangster We Are All Looking For, l thi diem thy
- The Very Inside: An Anthology of Writings by Asian and Pacific Islander Lesbians and Bisexual Women, ed. Sharon Lim-Hing
- Sista Tongue, Lisa Linn Kana`e