Ends of Assimilation: The Formation of Chicano Literature

Paperback | January 30, 2015

byJohn Alba Cutler

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Ends of Assimilation examines how Chicano literature imagines the conditions and costs of cultural change, arguing that its thematic preoccupation with assimilation illuminates the function of literature. John Alba Cutler shows how mid-century sociologists advanced a model of assimilation thatignored the interlinking of race, gender, and sexuality and characterized American culture as homogeneous, stable, and exceptional. He demonstrates how Chicano literary works from the postwar period to the present understand culture as dynamic and self-consciously promote literature as a medium forinfluencing the direction of cultural change. With original analyses of works by canonical and noncanonical writers - from Americo Paredes, Sandra Cisneros, and Jimmy Santiago Baca to Estela Portillo Trambley, Alfredo Vea, and Patricia Santana - Ends of Assimilation demands that we reevaluate assimilation, literature, and the very language weuse to talk about culture.

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Ends of Assimilation examines how Chicano literature imagines the conditions and costs of cultural change, arguing that its thematic preoccupation with assimilation illuminates the function of literature. John Alba Cutler shows how mid-century sociologists advanced a model of assimilation thatignored the interlinking of race, gender, a...

John Alba Cutler is Assistant Professor of English at Northwestern University.
Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9.21 × 6.1 × 0.98 inPublished:January 30, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0190210125

ISBN - 13:9780190210120

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Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction: Representing Race, Producing Culture: Chicano/a Literature and the Sociology of Assimilation1. Becoming Mexican-American Literature2. Quinto Sol, Chicano/a Literature, and the Long March Through Institutions3. Cultural Capital and the Singularity of Literature in Hunger of Memory and The Rain God4. Cultures of Poverty, Lyric Subjects, and Sandra Cisneros's Wicked Wicked Ways5. Segmented Assimilation and Jimmy Santiago Baca's Prison Counterpublics6. Disappeared Men: Chicano/a Authenticity and the American War in Viet NamConclusionWorks CitedIndex

Editorial Reviews

"In Ends of Assimilation, John Alba Cutler compellingly rethinks the history of Chicana/o literature by bringing it into conversation with assimilation sociology, a heretofore neglected critical task. Every chapter is filled with deft, nuanced interpretations that made me rethink what I knowabout the classics of Chicana/o literature as well as more contemporary works. In just one monograph, Cutler has reshaped the history of Chicana/o literature. A must read!" --Ralph Rodriguez, author of Brown Gumshoes: Detective Fiction and the Search for Chicana/o Identity