Founded In    1956
Published   quarterly
Language(s)   English, German
     

Fields of Interest

 

literature, cultural studies, history, political science, linguistics, critical theory, teaching of American Studies

     
ISSN   0340-2827
     
Publisher   Winter
     
Editorial Board

General Editor:
Oliver Scheiding

Review Editor:
Christa Buschendorf

Editorial Board:
Christa Buschendorf
Andreas Falke
Hans-Jürgen Grabbe
Alfred Hornung
Sabine Sielke

Managing Editor:
Damien B. Schlarb

Assistant Editor:
Nele Sawallisch

Submission Guidelines and Editorial Policies

For our full submission guidelines, please visit
https://dgfa.de/american-studies-a-quarterly-2/submitting/
Manuscripts and books for review should be submitted to the editorial office in Mainz. There is no obligation to review unsolicited books.
Amerikastudien / American Studies
Prof. Dr. Oliver Scheiding
FB 05 Dept. of English and Linguistics Amerikanistik
Johannes Gutenberg - University Mainz
Jakob Welder Weg 20 (Philosophicum II), room 02-229
55128 Mainz, Germany
Phone: +49 6131 39 20 296
Fax: +49 6131 39 20 356
Email: amst@uni-mainz.de
In view of the computerized production of the journal, manuscripts of articles and reviews can only be accepted if submitted as computer files (preferably MS Word) and accompanied by a printout. Please note the following formal requirements:
– Article manuscripts - manuscript text, abstract, notes, list of works cited - should not exceed 60,000 to 70,000 characters (including spaces).
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Amerikastudien / American Studies

ALTTEXT

Amerikastudien / American Studies is the journal of the German Association for American Studies. It started as the annual Jahrbuch für Amerikastudien in 1956 and has since developed into a quarterly with some 1200 subscriptions in Europe and the United States. The journal is dedicated to interdisciplinary and transnational perspectives and embraces the diversity and dynamics of a dialogic and comparatist understanding of American Studies. It covers all areas of American Studies from literary and cultural criticism, history, political science, and linguistics to the teaching of American Studies. Special-topics issues alternate with regular ones. Reviews, forums, and annual bibliographies support the international circulation of German and European scholarship in American Studies.
(www.amerikastudien.de/quarterly/)
Editor: Oliver Scheiding
Address: Amerikastudien/American Studies
FB 05 Dept. of English and Linguistics Amerikanistik
Johannes Gutenberg - University Mainz
Jakob Welder Weg 20 (Philosophicum II), room 02-229
55128 Mainz, Germany
Phone: +49 6131 39 20 296
Fax: +49 6131 39 20 356
Email: amst@uni-mainz.de

 

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Amerikastudien / American Studies 2008: Inter-American Studies and Nineteenth-Century Literature, Vol. 53, No. 1

Introduction: Inter-American Studies and Nineteenth-Century Literature


Invasive Methods: The Opening of Latin America in Nineteenth-Century U.S. Literature


During the nineteenth century, countless armed (military or filibustering) invasions, political interventions, acts of economic appropriation, and cultural (notably missionary) reeducation efforts by the United States or individual American citizens took place in virtually all parts of what was then and what is now Latin America. The motives ranged from territorial expansion or securing U.S. hegemony against European competitors or naked financial greed to an improvement of supposedly backward societies and civilizations. The respective geographical imaginations of both Latin America and the United States which informed these measures as well as the literary texts dealing with them follow certain established patterns. Anti-expansionists like Cooper or Melville avoided them by having their narratives take place in off-shore settings mirroring the instability of values and perceptions, but the jingoistic adventure novels of Frank R. Stockton do the same for the purpose of providing their protagonists direct naval access to the treasures they are to win and thus escape the need to deal with the complexities of Latin American life. Where these are actually depicted, the writers on both sides followed stereotypical assumptions even when they had extensive first-hand knowledge like travel writer John L.  Stephens, who thus compares unfavorably with Alexander von Humboldt. The discursive pattern is still discernible at the end of the century in the adventure novels and travelogues of Richard Harding Davis. Only in the writings of Stephen Crane do we find a serious self-reflective stance vis-à-vis the role America and Americans played south of the border.

Herman Melville's 'Benito Cereno,' Inter-American Relations, and Literary Pan-Americanism


The novella "Benito Cereno"  takes up such concerns as slavery, colonialism, and imperialism in a way that goes beyond the national context of the United States. As in much of Melville’s writing, an explicitly transnational fictional perspective is employed for the symbolical negotiation of conflict lines, historical controversies and predicaments of U.S. society and culture. "Benito Cereno," the following essay wants to suggest, does so in complex and decidedly Pan-American terms. The tale, simultaneously one about liberation and deception, appears particularly fruitful for an analysis of both fictional accounts of inter-American relations and the literary history of the postcolonial Americas.

Blurring the Boundaries of Gender: The Strong 'Spanish' Woman in Nineteenth-Century U.S. Popular Women's Writing


'Spanish' women enter American popular literature in notable numbers in the period af;ter the Mexican-American War, often as highly racialized figures. While they are frequently represented as exotic and passionate objects of desire in dime novels and other popular writings by male authors, popular women writers such as Augusta Evans, Louisa May Alcott, and May Agnes Fleming employ the figure of the 'Spanish' woman for the cautious subversion and violation of Victorian norms of femininity. The presence of the 'Spanish' woman of European or Latin American descent in these texts functions to dramatize the white female character's impulses of rebellion against contemporary limitations on white middle-class women. Drawing on stereotypical associations of the Latin woman with darkness, unruliness, impulsiveness, and excess, Evans, Alcott, and Fleming create racialized figures of 'Spanishness' which allow them to invent scenarios of independence and power.

The Imagined Inter-American Community of María Amparo Ruiz de Burton


María Amparo Ruiz de Burton (1832-1895) is among the best-remembered authors of nineteenth-century Mexican-American literature. However, her assimilationist position and her eminent social status are not characteristic of early Mexican-American writers in general, who tended to focus on resisting Anglo dominance. In her two major novels, Who Would Have Thought It? (1872) and The Squatter and the Don (1885), Ruiz de Burton acknowledges that there is a distinct mexicanidad,  a defining cultural identity of people of Mexican descent. But her narrative construction of a group identity is not based on ethnicity: while her fictions exclude Mexican farm laborers, indios, mestizos, and the lower classes from this imagined community, they propagate an alliance of the wealthy and righteous among U.S. Mexicans as well as U.S. Anglos. This imagined community is exemplified by the central couple of The Squatter and the Don and is inspired by the author’s own marriage to a land-owning Anglo army captain in California.  Its defining features concentrate on the class-based values and customs that could define a future inter-American elite. Ruiz de Burton’s elitism has created difficulties for the canon formation and self-definition of a Mexican-American literature that had traditionally highlighted ethnicity as well as working-class experiences and that had been focused on Mexican opposition to the Anglo mainstream rather than on the imaginative creation of an Anglo-Mexican community.

Nations,  Regions, and Mid-Nineteenth-Century Texas:  History in On the Long Tide and Caballero


This paper examines two historical novels written in Texas in the first third of the twentieth century but representing social life in mid-nineteenth-century Texas.  The first, On the Long Tide by Laura Krey, addresses the Texas Revolution and Independence from Mexico beginning in the 1820s and climaxing in 1836. It does so from an Old South plantation perspective then transplanted to east Texas. The second, Caballero,  co-authored by Jovita Gonzalez and Eve Raleigh, represents society in the largely Mexican settlement section of southern Texas on the eve of the Mexican-American War of 1846-1848. The war directly impacted this society but also expanded the United States to its present border with Mexico and to the Pacific   Ocean. Together, then, both novels speak of the period during which the very idea of the Americas as an interactive—if asymmetrical—alignment of new nations independent from the Old World comes into actual being with Mexico and the United States as the most proximate of these. Each novel offers a symbolic and seeming solution to the social conflict generated by the first interaction in Texas between Mexico and the United States. On the Long Tide proposes an idyllic continuation of Old South, white, plantation, slave-owning society in the new Texas territory wrested from Mexico, while Caballero offers a much more complex stance of negotiation and compromise between Mexicans and white Southerners in Texas. However, as novels of the first third of the twentieth century, both novels are also using a nineteenth-century idiom to address continuing concerns with race and ethnicity but also modernization in Texas, the South, and the United States in the historical prelude to the civil rights struggles of the mid-twentieth century. The paper closes with an assessment of these works from the perspective of critical regionalism.

Other Issues

Amerikastudien / American Studies 2018: Digital Scholarship in American Studies, Vol. 63, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2018, Vol. 63, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2017: Marx and the United States, Vol. 62, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2017, Vol. 62, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2017: Poetry and Law, Vol. 62, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2017, Vol. 62, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2016: Environmental Imaginaries on the Move: Nature and Mobility in American Literature and Culture, Vol. 61, No.4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2016, Vol. 61, No.3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2016: Turkish-American Literature, Vol. 61, No.2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2016, Vol. 61, No.1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2015: Risk, Security: Approaches to Uncertainty in American Literature, Vol. 60, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2015, Double Issue, Vol. 60, No. 2/3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2015: Network Theory and American Studies, Vol. 60, No.1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2014: South Africa and the United States in Transnational American Studies, Vol. 59, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2014, Vol. 59, No. 3,
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2014, Vol. 59, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2014, Vol. 59, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2013: Iconographies of the Calamitous in American Visual Culture, Vol. 58, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2013, Vol. 58, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2013: Pragmatism's Promise, Vol. 58, No. 2
Amerika Studien / American Studies 2013, Vol. 58, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2012: Tocqueville's Legacy: Towards a Cultural History of Recognition in American Studies , Vol. 57, No.4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2012, 57.3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2012 - Conceptions of Collectivity in Contemporary American Literature, Vol. 57, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2012, Vol. 57, Vol. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2011: American Comic Books and Graphic Novels, Vol. 56, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2011, Vol. 56, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2011, Vol. 56, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2011, Vol. 56, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2010: African American Literary Studies: New Texts, New Approaches, New Challenges , Vol. 55, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2010: Trauma's Continuum -- September 11th Reconsidered, Vol. 55, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2010, Vol. 55, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2010: Poverty and the Culturalization of Class , Vol. 55, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2009, Vol. 54, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2009: American History/ies in Germany: Assessments, Transformations, Perspectives, Vol. 54, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2009, Vol. 54, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2009: Appropriating Vision(s): Visual Practices in American Women's Writing, Vol. 54, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2008, Vol. 53, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2008: Die Bush-Administration: Eine erste Bilanz, Vol. 53, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2008, Vol. 53, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2007, Vol. 52, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2007 - Teaching American Studies in the Twenty-First Century, Vol. 52, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2007, Vol. 52, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2007 - Transatlantic Perspectives on American Visual Culture, Vol. 52, No. 1
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2006, Vol. 51, No. 4
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2006 - Asian American Studies in Europe, Vol. 51, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2006, Vol. 51, No. 2
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2006 - Multilingualism and American Studies , Vol. 51, No. 1
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Amerikastudien / American Studies 2005 - Early American Visual Culture, Vol. 50, No. 3
Amerikastudien / American Studies 2005 - American Studies at 50, Vol. 50, Nos. 1/2