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dc.contributor.advisorEasterbrook, Neil
dc.contributor.authorWright, Andrea Rohlfsen_US
dc.identifierMicrofilm Diss. 723.en_US
dc.description.abstractIn the fiction of Grace Paley, Alice Walker, Achy Obejas, and Joyce Carol Oates, the reciprocity of memory and history creates a dialogical conversation between skepticism and hope, indifference and compassion, and isolation and community. Searching for the traumatic origins of their texts, these writers instead discover intertextuality. The perpetual backwards progression of textual memory, combined with a discovery that memory entails imagination and invention as well as veridical recall, suspends the authority of origin. Nevertheless, the writers continue to search for a horizon of Truth. Without completely dismantling the traditional differences between memory and history, these writers nevertheless stress the historical implications of personal, cultural, and collective memory. Gender also plays an important role in determining the function of memory. Women must juxtapose individual and collective recall both to recover their erased pasts and to transform the conditions under which they have become subordinated. Using a wide variety of theorists, including Cathy Caruth, Gayle Greene, Paul Ricoeur, Mikhail Bakhtin, and Michel Foucault, I explore the interdisciplinarity of memory. Chapter One centers on Grace Paley's ¿Faith¿ stories. Chapter Two concerns Alice Walker's epic novel The Temple of My Familiar , while the third chapter considers Achy Obejas's Memory Mambo . Finally, I devote two chapters to Joyce Carol Oates¿one to her novel Foxfire and another to three works that contemplate trauma, You Must Remember This, We Were the Mulvaneys, and Black Water. Despite the texts' rhetorical worldview of undecidability, memory provides the key to unlocking their doors of knowledge. The jouissance of memory constructs multiple ¿truths¿ that combine hope with fear, comprehension with yearning, desire with loathing, and simplicity with complexity. Although we will never know the Truth of contemporary women's fiction, we will know the rhetorical conditions that make truths possible, the function of memory in searching for such truths, and the meaning that results from reconceptualizing memory and history.
dc.format.extentvi, 385 leavesen_US
dc.format.mediumFormat: Printen_US
dc.relation.ispartofTexas Christian University dissertationen_US
dc.subject.lcshPaley, Grace--Criticism and interpretationen_US
dc.subject.lcshWalker, Alice, 1944---Criticism and interpretationen_US
dc.subject.lcshObejas, Achy, 1956---Criticism and interpretationen_US
dc.subject.lcshOates, Joyce Carol, 1938---Criticism and interpretationen_US
dc.subject.lcshLiterature, Modern--20th century--History and criticismen_US
dc.subject.lcshMemory in literatureen_US
dc.subject.lcshHistory in literatureen_US
dc.titleImagining a past: memory and history in the fiction of Grace Paley, Alice Walker, Achy Obejas, and Joyce Carol Oatesen_US
dc.typeTexten_US of English
local.collegeAddRan College of Liberal Arts
local.academicunitDepartment of English
dc.identifier.callnumberMain Stacks: AS38 .W7515 (Regular Loan)
dc.identifier.callnumberSpecial Collections: AS38 .W7515 (Non-Circulating) of Philosophy Christian University

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