By David S. Goldstein, Audrey B. Thacker
This quantity of accrued essays bargains really multiethnic, traditionally comparative, and meta-theoretical readings of the literature and tradition of the us. masking works by way of a various set of yankee authors--from Toni Morrison to Bret Harte--these essays offer an essential complement to the serious literary canon, mapping a newly variegated terrain that refuses the excellence among “ethnic” and “nonethnic” literatures.
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Additional info for Complicating Constructions: Race, Ethnicity, and Hybridity in American Texts
In r844, they helped elect President Polk, a Democrat who led the country to war with Mexico; they often contributed to the mobocracy of violent voting arenas to help maintain the slave state; and many Irish, according to Iganatiev, generally supported an ideology of "white solidarity" (77). This, Ignatiev concludes, is how the Irish "became" white-in an attempt to overcome the racism and anti-Catholicism they encountered in Anglo America, Irish Americans sought their economic and political stability at the expense of black freedom.
He gets his large land tract "cultivated" and "civilizes" the squatters in the process by ensuring them a homestead, a livelihood, and, of course, interest-free loans on cattle or wood (88-9)· But there is no civilizing the squatters, as Matthews exclaims, "I ain't no 'vaquero' to go 'husqumng' around and lassoing cattle" (89). Ironically, neither is Don Mariano. "I don't go 'busquering' around lassoing, unless 19 CITIZENSHIP RIGHTS AND COLONIAL WHITES I want to," the Don explains, "You can hire an Indian boy to do that part" (89).
Moreover, Gutierrez (Walts and Mirrors) has shown how, throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, some Mexican American social organizations have rhetorically positioned themselves nationally and ethnically with Anglo Americans instead of Mexican immigrants during times of national and legal crisis. Finally, many early twentieth-century Mexican American writers, such as Maria Cristina Mena, Nina Otero-Warren, Fabiola Cabeza de Baca, and Jovita Gonzalez, emphasized Mexican American cultural whiteness, leading Raymund Paredes to claim pejoratively that such writers suffered from "hacienda syndrome" ("Evolution" 52).