Asian American Literature - Ambivalent Precursors (ALA May 27-30, 2010 San Francisco)

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Circle for Asian American Literary Studies / American Literature Association
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The Circle for Asian American Literary Studies invites papers for a panel on critical reevaluations of Asian American literature before 1970. According to Kandice Chuh, Asian American studies initially relied on claiming America as a nation to contest racist essentialism. But more recently, shifts in Asian American studies towards transnational analyses demand more complex responses to early Asian American texts. For example, literature previously dismissed as Orientalist might be recuperated as complex responses to both subnational and transnational affiliations. Or canonical texts of Asian American literature might be re-situated in the context of a more open genealogy of precursors. Additionally, reperiodization, different conceptions of time and the question of American neo-imperialism might all justify new approaches to how Asian American texts should be understood as literary history. Topics might include understudied early 20th century American writers of Asian descent, writers of various ethnicities that are important to Asian American studies, or possibly corrective readings of well-known figures. Please submit CVs and 250-350 word abstracts by December 31, 2009 to Merton Lee, or