Journal

Recent Issue

Spring 2013, Volume 46, Number 1

The Playful “i” in Tato Laviera’s Poetry: An Arte poética
Nancy Bird-Soto
The notion of belonging to a broader cultural landscape becomes obvious in the writer’s intentions to offer a poetry that is accessible to the people, while at the same time tackling fundamental identity crossroads pertaining to social status, race and ethnicity, cultural heritage, and language. Attuned to the goal of accessibility, Laviera’s poetry is decidedly oral in form, whereas in content it is devoted to the language and circumstances of what he calls “his people” and their everyday experiences.

“Like a shadow, / I’ll ever dwell”: The Jailer’s Daughter as Ariadne in The Two Noble Kinsmen
Nichole DeWall
My primary argument here is that Fletcher and Shakespeare did in the subplot what they did in the main plot—retold an old story—and that an investigation of how early modern audiences may have experienced the
subplot is essential to a fuller understanding of the play as a whole.

Violating the Black Body: Sexual Violence in Truman Capote’s Other Voices, Other Rooms
Thomas Fahy
The distinction is an important one, for Capote recognizes that whiteness gives Joel access to power and privileges that African Americans do not have in the United States. He recognizes that the social and personal costs for black women are far greater than those for gay white men.

The Roaring Boy: Contested Masculinity on the Early Modern Stage
Daniel Gates
The satirical representation of the roaring boy shows how men of a variety of social stations aped the belligerent, courtly, military styles of the upper class. And this stock figure highlights how the demimonde of early modern London, a site where social class is harder to determine with precision, was represented on stage.

Learning from Our Mistakes: Difficulty and Insight in the Literature Classroom
Blake Seana Locklin
In this paper, I argue for the value of the basic reading comprehension errors that despite the best efforts at teaching and learning occur even in an advanced literature class. What seems to be a basic misreading of a text
can lead both teacher and students to insight.

William Ellis, John Williams, and the Role of History in Missionary Nation-Making
Winter Jade Werner
These surprising aspects of missionary narratives are worth consideration, not only because they helpfully inflect and nuance existing scholarship on missionaries’ role in British imperialism. Perhaps more importantly, they make clear how missionary narratives provided (to borrow a phrase from Etienne Balibar and Pierre Macherey’s essay, “On Literature as an Ideological Form”) an “imaginary solution [to] implacable ideological
contradictions.”

Book Reviews

Liberalism and the Culture of Security: The Nineteenth-Century Rhetoric of Reform
By Katherine Henry (Jodi Wagner-Angell)
The book joins a growing field of rhetorical studies on how abolitionists and women argued for an expansion of citizenship, as it examines a range of material from the Declaration of Independence to novels and speeches
in order to highlight how opposing sides used the same language of protecting a ‘right’ or ‘liberty’ that is under siege” (xiii).

Reading Human Nature: Literary Darwinism in Theory and Practice
By Joseph Carroll (Liberty Kohn)
Carroll provides thoughtful answers throughout his latest collection to some of literary criticism’s woes. His purpose is to provide a large theory, to provoke thought. However, Carroll and LD remain unpersuasive in several areas, even to a friendly reader.

Romances of the White Man’s Burden: Race, Empire, and the Plantation in American Literature, 1880–1936
By Jeremy Wells (Katherine E. Bishop)
In all, Wells carefully examines the arc of the idea of the Southern plantation and its signification, “cultural forms that have not gone away” (184). He brightens his scintillating close readings and crisp arguments through
lively prose, including phrases such as “Dixon was a blood freak” (117).

Jim Tully: American Writer, Irish Rover, Hollywood Brawler
By Paul J. Bauer and Mark Dawidziak (Jeffrey Swenson)
Bauer and Dawidziak have written an in-depth and well-researched summary of Tully’s life, and the depth and breadth of the study sometimes slows the overall pace of the narrative. The vision of Tully’s life garnered
from Kent State University Press’s new facsimile editions of Tully’s work, on the other hand, provide a series of vivid snapshots, sometime imaginings, and well-rendered fictions based on Tully’s life, texts that are
both engaging and beautiful.

Understanding Lorrie Moore
By Alison Kelly (Elizabeth Lundberg)
Kelly’s treatments of the recurring elements of Moore’s fiction, whether thematic, such as female embodiment, journeys and dislocation, and feelings of marginalization and estrangement, or aesthetic and formal, such
as her use of simile, metafictional constructions, and free indirect narration, are consistently compelling, and will remind readers what they love about Moore while showing them what they might have missed.