Karen Ruth Kornweibel is associate professor of English in the Department of Literature and Language at East Tennessee State University.
The comparative turn in American studies has allowed scholars to
uncover the workings of identity formations across borders of
nation and personhood, and to interrogate their common conceptions
and assemblages, to use Alexander Weheylie's term. Kornweibel (East
Tennessee State Univ.) follows in this vein as she studies the
connections between race and national identity through a
cross-cultural comparison of writers from Cuba and the US. She
places fugitive slaves Juan Francisco Manzano and Frederick
Douglass in dialogue along with post-slavery writers Martin Morua
Delgado and Charles Chesnutt so that she can trace their arguments
against racialization as a rationale for exclusion from national
identities. Kornweibel is adept in discussing these authors'
fictions and nonfiction writings and analyzing their use of
language to symbolically express the social anxieties behind the
lack of recognition afforded Afro-Cuban and African Americans in
their respective lands, and to contest their placement as
noncitizens and articulate their humanity as grounds for inclusion
in their social arenas. Writing for Inclusion should appeal to
scholars of African American and American studies for its
engagement with race and nation across the diaspora.
Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students, researchers, faculty. * CHOICE *