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Abstract

In American ethnic literature of the last three decades of the 20th century, recurrent themes of mobility, travel, and “homing in” are emblematic of the search for identity. In this essay, which discusses three short stories, Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use,” Louise Erdrich’s “The World’s Greatest Fishermen,” and Daniel Chacon’s “The Biggest City in the World,” I attempt to demonstrate that as a consequence of technological development, with travel becoming increasingly accessible to ethnic Americans, their search for identity assumes wider range, transcending national and cultural boundaries.

References

Anderson, Eric Gary. American Indian Literature and the Southwest. Contexts and Dispositions. Austin: U of Texas P, 1999. Print

Chacon, Daniel. “The Biggest City in the World.” Chicano Chicanery. Houston: Arte Publico, 2000. 21-35. Print Clifford, James. Routes. Travel and Translation in the Late Twentieth Century. Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1997. Print

Cummings, Dolan. The Trouble with Being Human These Days. Rev. of Identity by Zygmunt Bauman. Culturewars.org. Culture Wars. Web. 20 Oct. 2011

Durczak, Joanna. “Sherman Alexie’s ‘Armani Indians’ and the New Range of Native American Fiction.” Polish Journal for American Studies. 2 (2008): 103-20. Print

Erdrich, Louise. “The World’s Greatest Fishermen.” Love Medicine. New York: Harper-Perennial, 1993. 1-42. Print

Erdrich, Louise. Interview by Josephine Reeds. Web. 30 Nov. 2011

Gaines, Ernest. “The Sky is Gray.” Heath Anthology. Ed. Paul Lauter. Vol. 2. Lexington: Heath, 1994, 2594-2614. Print

Sollors, Werner. The Invention of Ethnicity. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1989. Print

Walker, Alice. “Everyday Use.” The Norton Anthology of African American Literature. Ed. Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Nellie Y. McKay. New York: Norton, 1997. 2274-80. Print

First Page

239

Last Page

249

Language

eng

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