Higher Education

The Wadsworth Themes American Literature Series, 1945-Present, Theme 17: Race and Ethnicity in the Melting Pot, 1st Edition

  • Jay Parini Middlebury College
  • Henry Hart College of William and Mary
  • ISBN-10: 1428262490  |  ISBN-13: 9781428262492
  • 112 Pages
  • © 2009 | Published
  • College Bookstore Wholesale Price = $14.00
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About

Overview

The first thematic series published for American literature, THE WADSWORTH THEMES IN AMERICAN LITERATURE SERIES is currently comprised of 21 themes spanning the time period normally covered in the two-semester American literature survey course—1492 to the present. Each carefully edited booklet centers on a core issue of the period with attention given to the development of key themes. Each thematic booklet offers an introductory contextual essay, a variety of literary perspectives, headnotes and footnotes, along with a variety of visual elements. The series allows you to mix and match themes to best meet the unique needs of your course—choose one booklet to complement an anthology and provide particular emphasis on a specific time period or create a bundle of two or more booklets as an alternative to other course materials. Henry Hart is a contemporary poet, biographer, and critic with a broad range of work to his credit. He currently holds a chair in literature at the College of William and Mary. His themes are drawn from the postwar era, and he puts before readers a seductive range of work by poets, fiction writers, and essayists. Many of the themes from earlier volumes find their culmination here. Hart offers students a chance to think hard about the matter of ethnicity and race in contemporary America. He explores the role of class, gender, and sexuality in American society. In all, these thematic booklets by Hart are certain to challenge, entertain, and instruct.

Features and Benefits

  • THE WADSWORTH THEMES IN AMERICAN LITERATURE SERIES strikes a teachable balance in choice of texts, offering an eclectic range of new works by classic authors as well as substantial examples of works by writers who for cultural or historical reasons have been ignored in the past.
  • This thematic series emphasizes situating texts in their appropriate contexts as well as conveying the sense that these texts speak to those who went before them. THE WADSWORTH THEMES IN AMERICAN LITERATURE SERIES asks a provocative yet basic question that every citizen should consider: What is America? The poets, novelists, and essayists we have included in our thematic series were not shy about offering a response.
  • High-quality illustrations place the selections in their historical contexts, making the literature more accessible to students.
  • Each selection is succinctly introduced by the volume editor and accompanied by headnotes—containing only the most essential information about each period and author—written by a wide array of specialists in the field. The pedagogical apparatus (introductions, headnotes, and illustrations) gives students a clear view of the historical moment, so they can see how authors respond in different ways to contemporary issues of the time and to national obsessions as well as to how literature becomes, over time, a lively conversation among immensely articulate men and women.

Table of Contents

James Baldwin (1924–1987).
Sonny's Blues.
Malcolm X (1925–1965).
The Ballot or the Bullet.
Gwendolyn Brooks (1917–2000).
To the Young Who Want to Die.
Rita Dove (b. 1952).
Wingfoot Lake.
Sherman Alexie (b. 1966).
Because My Father Always Said He Was the Only Indian Who Saw Jimi Hendrix Play "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Woodstock.
Amy Tan (b. 1952).
Alien Relative.
Richard Rodriguez (b. 1944).
From Aria: A Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood.
Ana Menéndez (b. 1970).
In Cuba I was a German Shepherd.

Meet the Author

Author Bio

Jay Parini

Jay Parini is a poet, novelist, and biographer. He is Axinn Professor of English at Middlebury College in Vermont. Among his books are THE LAST STATION (Holt, 1990), BENJAMIN’S CROSSING (Holt, 1997), THE ART OF SUBTRACTION: NEW AND SELECTED POEMS (Braziller, 2005), and WHY POETRY MATTERS (Yale, 2008). He has written biographies of John Steinbeck, Robert Frost, and William Faulkner. He has edited numerous books, including THE OXFORD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF AMERICAN LITERATURE (Oxford, 2004) and THE WADSWORTH ANTHOLOGY OF POETRY (Wadsworth, 2006).

Henry Hart

Henry Hart is the Mildred and J.B. Hickman Professor of Humanities in the English Department at The College of William and Mary. He has published numerous critical books on modern poets, including THE POETRY OF GEOFFREY HILL (SIU Press, 1986), SEAMUS HEANEY: POET OF CONTRARY PROGRESSIONS (Syracuse UP, 1991), ROBERT LOWELL AND THE SUBLIME (Syracuse UP, 1995), and THE JAMES DICKEY READER (Touchstone, 1999). His biography, JAMES DICKEY: THE WORLD AS LIE (St. Martins, 2000), was runner-up for a Southern Book Critics’ Circle Award. He has also published three books of poetry: THE GHOST SHIP (Blue Moon Books,1990), THE ROOSTER MASK (University of Illinois Press, 1998), and BACKGROUND RADIATION (Salt, 2007). He serves as managing editor of VERSE, a poetry magazine he helped found in 1984. His essays and poems have appeared in journals such as THE NEW YORKER, POETRY, THE SOUTHERN REVIEW, DENVER QUARTERLY, THE GETTYSBURG REVIEW, THE GEORGIA REVIEW, THE KENYON REVIEW, and TWENTIETH CENTURY LITERATURE.