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Bridging The Americas: The Literature of Paule Marshall, Toni Morrison, and Gayl Jones
by Stelamaris Coser
Temple University Press, 1994
Cloth: 978-1-56639-266-2 | Paper: 978-1-56639-267-9
Library of Congress Classification PS153.N5C73 1995
Dewey Decimal Classification 813.5409928709

"This book is at the forefront of American literature studies. It will add to the growing dialogue on Pan-Africanism in the diaspora, and exposes the rich multiculturalism of literature in the Americas. Coser is making her mark as an engaged and activist scholar."

--Gay Wilentz, author of Binding Cultures: Black Women Writers in Africa and the Diaspora

A literary study of three important black women writers, this book examines the "inter-American" characteristics in the work of Paule Marshall, Toni Morrison, and Gayl Jones, including detailed discussions of Morrison's Song of Solomon and Tar Baby, Jones's Corregidora and Song of Anninho, and Marshall's The Chosen Place, The Timeless People.

Coser defines the inter-American characteristics in these authors' novels as a connection based on a common African heritage and a shared legacy of colonialism and racism. These three authors redefine the boundaries between the Americas, bridging the "extended Caribbean" that stretches from the U.S. Atlantic coast to Brazil. Their work reinterprets ethnic and sexual identity. Issues of race, class, and nationality overlap. History and identity are reinvented.

To explore the collective forms of resistance and cultural processes in Brazil, the Caribbean, and the United States, Coser also makes provocative connections between the visibility of black women writers and the popularity of male Latin American novelists like Carlos Fuentes and Gabriel Garcia Marquéz.
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