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Negotiating History and Culture

Transculturation in Contemporary Native American Fiction

Series:

Karsten Fitz

Native American cultures have always succeeded to varying degrees in negotiating a balance between their tribal cultural heritage and the ‘dominant culture.’ In the present study, the meeting between these cultures is not interpreted as a clash, but as a cultural encounter in a contact zone. The concept of transculturation serves as a theoretical model to analyze how history and culture are fictionally constructed in contemporary American Indian literature. Developing a dynamic, dialogic, and reciprocal relationship between their native worldviews and literary techniques, on the one hand, and those of the larger society, on the other, the writers examined in this study – Anna Lee Walters, Diane Glancy, James Welch, Linda Hogan, Thomas King, and Gerald Vizenor – stress the processual nature of culture. These writers demonstrate that transculturation functions as a major strategy of survival for Native Americans in the past and in the present.

BIC Classifications

  • Literature & literary studies (D)
    • Literature: history & criticism (DS)
      • Literary studies: general (DSB)
        • Literary studies: from c 1900 - (DSBH)
  • English language teaching (ELT) (E)
    • ELT background & reference material (EB)

BISAC Classifications

  • Foreign Language Study (FOR)
    • FOREIGN LANGUAGE STUDY / English as a Second Language (FOR007000)
  • Literary Criticism (LIT)
    • LITERARY CRITICISM / American / General (LIT004020)

THEMA Classifications

  • Biography, Literature & Literary studies (D)
    • Literature: history & criticism (DS)
      • Literary studies: general (DSB)
        • Literary studies: c 1900 to c 2000 (DSBH)
  • Reference, Information & Interdisciplinary subjects (G)
    • Interdisciplinary studies (GT)
      • Regional studies (GTM)
  • Society & Social Sciences (J)
    • Society & culture: general (JB)
  • Geographical qualifiers (1)
    • Europe (1D)
      • Western Europe (1DD)
        • United Kingdom, Great Britain (1DDU)
    • The Americas (1K)
      • North America (USA & Canada) (1KB)
        • Canada (1KBC)
  • Language qualifiers (2)
    • Indo-European languages (2A)
      • Germanic & Scandinavian languages (2AC)
        • English (2ACB)
          • American English (2ACBK)