Patricia D. Fox discusses in her article, "Fiction, Biography, Autobiography, and Postmodern Nostalgia in (Con)Texts of Return," the meditations, in novel and essay, of variously positioned writers and protagonists as each contemplates return to a never glimpsed or long-lost geographical and cultural center. Attempting to decipher the grounding in place and time, by heritage or tradition, Fox's analysis juxtaposes selected texts: Hungarian Rhapsodies: Essays on Ethnicity, Identity and Culture (Richard Teleky, 1997); Out of America: A Black Man Confronts Africa (Keith B. Richburg, 1998); Dreaming in Cuban: A Novel (Cristina García, 1992); The Hundred Secret Senses (Amy Tan, 1995); Next Year in Cuba: A Cubano's Coming-of-Age in America (Gustavo Pirez Firmat, 1995); and Zenzele: A Letter for My Daughter (J. Nozipo Maraire, 1996). The discussion compares the at once postmodern and nostalgic negotiation of the enunciated perception of displacement, on the one hand, and, on the other, a truncated sense of belonging, be it circumstantial, constructed, or assumed. Thus, the study suggests that, coupling imagination and substitution in the search of tangible ties (e.g., language), essayist, novelist, and protagonist transform themselves into architects of a unique transcultural history and diversely place themselves within a desired territorial context by the studied reconciliation of polarities.
Fox, Patricia D.
"Fiction, Biography, Autobiography, and Postmodern Nostalgia in (Con)Texts of Return."
CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture
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