In its first five years, American Literary History has produced an exciting body of work representing the full range of American literary critical practices at a time when no consensus in the field exists. This collection brings together the cream of this cutting-edge work, presentingseventeen of the most significant voices in the argument over literature's importance. Among the contributors and issues included in the anthology are Hertha D. Wong on Indian pictographs and the language of selfhood they inscribe, David Lionel Smith on the Black Arts Movement, Henry Louis Gates,Jr. on the new pluralism, David Leverenz on the "representative man" and gender politics, Betsy Erkkila on Dickinson and class, and Ramon Saldivar on the literature of the border. A state of the art look at American literary criticism, this handy compendium will interest all scholars and studentsin the field, regardless of their familiarity with the journal.