Feminist Engagements: Forays into American Literature and Culture

Paperback | March 15, 2009

byShelley Fisher Fishkin

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This book offers historically-grounded, feminist interventions into American literary history by one of the country's leading scholars in American Studies. Integrating criticism, biography, social history, popular culture, and personal narrative Fishkin explores the poetry, fiction, nonfiction and drama of the nineteenth- and twentieth-century. These charismatic, readable essays range from explorations of feminist humor and chutzpah, to meditations on the personal and the political, to examinations of feminists' challenges to cultural paradigms. Fishkin’s lively voice engages readers with the American past and leaves a bold stamp on the literary landscape.

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This book offers historically-grounded, feminist interventions into American literary history by one of the country's leading scholars in American Studies. Integrating criticism, biography, social history, popular culture, and personal narrative Fishkin explores the poetry, fiction, nonfiction and drama of the nineteenth- and twentieth...

Shelley Fisher Fishkin is Professor of English and Director of American Studies at Stanford University. She is the award-winning author, editor or co-editor of over forty books, including Lighting Out for the Territory: Reflections on Mark Twain and American Culture; Was Huck Black? Mark Twain and African-American Voices; Listening to...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 9.26 × 6.1 × 0.6 inPublished:March 15, 2009Publisher:Palgrave MacmillanLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0230615945

ISBN - 13:9780230615946

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Table of Contents

Introduction * PART I: Changing the Story * “The Borderlands of Culture” * “Making a Change” * "Reading, Writing and Arithmetic” * “Changing the Story” * “Essentialism and its Discontents” * PART II: Men Reading & Writing Women/Women Reading & Writing Men * "Dreiser and the Discourse of Gender” * "Mark Twain and Women” * “An Interview with Maxine Hong Kingston” * “The Bondwoman's Escape” * PART III: Humor and Chutzpah * “Feminist Humor and Charlotte Perkins Gilman” * “Theresa Malkiel’s Diary of a Shirtwaist Striker” * “Erica Jong” * Epilogue

Editorial Reviews

"These 'forays' are excellent examples of second-wave feminist scholarship . . . Highly recommended to all readers."--CHOICE“Because she has an appreciation of humor and of writing from the undergrounds of race, class, and gender, Shelley Fisher Fishkin is the perfect person to meditate on the contributions of black and Latino writers, unsung women writers, and those who transgress the conventional boundaries of literature. Her book is enormously valuable and great fun to read.”—Erica Jong, poet and novelist, author of twenty-two books including Love Comes First“Shelley Fisher Fishkin gives us a spirited and personal account of her coming to feminism, of the mentors who inspired her and the shifts in methodology and perspective her feminist engagements have provoked in her critical work. Feminism, for Fishkin, is a way of reading—American literature by women and men, popular culture, and, most engagingly, humor—that leads to a reconceptualization of American Studies by one of its foremost scholars.”--Marianne Hirsch, Co-Director, Institute for Research on Women and Gender, Columbia University“This book is excitingly, intellectually engaged and, at the same time, movingly self-revelatory. Every page is to be savored.”--Annette Kolodny, Professor Emerita of American Literature and Culture, University of Arizona and author of The Lay of the Land