Edited By Irene Maria F. Blayer and Dulce Maria Scott
Chapter Nine: Katherine Vaz’s “Lisbon Story”: Representing Place and Cultural Identity
← 172 | 173 →
Katherine Vaz’s “Lisbon Story”
Representing Place and Cultural Identity
FERNANDA LUíSA FENEJA
In an interview by Catarina Carvalho published in the Portuguese newspaper, Jornal de Notícias, Katherine Vaz states that going to places one is going to write about helps understand their essence, far beyond the scope of information provided by research. In her view, such a direct, immediate contact entails a sort of sensorial, kinesthetic experience that enables a closer and more comprehensive immersion in the authentic nature of that place (Carvalho n. pag.).
In Katherine Vaz’s fiction, the knowledge of Portugal is rooted not only in the several trips she made both to the continent and the Azores, but also, and most likely more deeply, in her family background and cultural heritage. A descendant of Azorean immigrants to the United States, Vaz is referred to as a writer of Portuguese-American literature (Silva 52–53), a term that applies to the body of literary production by Portuguese immigrants or by their American-born descendants. In both cases, this literature is born into Portuguese-American communities and, as Onésimo Almeida points out, besides being shaped by the cultural dialogue with two different literary traditions (depending on whether it is written in English or in Portuguese), it reflects the hybrid character of the Portuguese-American experience (737). This cross-cultural bond is all the more evident in the titles of Katherine Vaz’s works, which,...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.