A History of Literature in the Caribbean

Volume 3: Cross-Cultural Studies

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  • Editor: A. James Arnold1
  • Format: PDF
  • Publication Year: 1997
  • e-Book ISBN 9789027297778

<i>Cross-Cultural Studies</i> is the culminating effort of a distinguished team of international scholars who have worked since the mid-1980s to create the most complete analysis of Caribbean literature ever undertaken. Conceived as a major contribution to postcolonial studies, cultural studies, cultural anthropology, and regional studies of the Caribbean and the Americas, <i>Cross-Cultural Studies</i> illuminates the interrelations between and among Europe, the Caribbean islands, Africa, and the American continents from the late fifteenth century to the present. Scholars from five continents bring to bear on the most salient issues of Caribbean literature theoretical and critical positions that are currently in the forefront of discussion in literature, the arts, and public policy.<br />Among the major issues treated at length in <i>Cross-Cultural Studies</i> are: The history and construction of racial inequality in Caribbean colonization; The origins and formation of literatures in various Creoles; The gendered literary representation of the Caribbean region; The political and ideological appropriation of Caribbean history in creating the idea of national culture in North and South America, Europe, and Africa; The role of the Caribbean in contemporary theories of Modernism and the Postmodern; The decentering of such canonical authors as Shakespeare; The vexed but inevitable connectedness of Caribbean literature with both its former colonial metropoles and its geographical neighbors.<br />Contributions to <i>Cross-Cultural Studies</i> give a concrete cultural and historical analysis of such contemporary critical terms as hybridity, transculturation, and the carnivalesque, which have so often been taken out of context and employed in narrowly ideological contexts.<br />Two important theories of the simultaneous unity and diversity of Caribbean literature and culture, propounded by Antonio Ben&#237;tez-Rojo and +douard Glissant, receive extended treatment that places them strategically in the debate over multiculturalism in postcolonial societies and in the context of chaos theory. A contribution by Ben&#237;tez-Rojo permits the reader to test the theory through his critical practice.<br />Divided into nine thematic and methodological sections followed by a complete index to the names and dates of authors and significant historical figures discussed, <i>Cross-Cultural Studies</i> will be an indispensable resource for every library and a necessary handbook for scholars, teachers, and advanced students of the Caribbean region.<br />

Subjects: Other literatures; Comparative literature & literary studies

  • Affiliations: 1: University of Virginia

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