By Laura Doyle
The determine of the mummy in literature and the humanities has been the topic of a lot fresh serious recognition. while many reports have concerned about girls writers and the maternal, Laura Doyle considerably broadens the sphere via tracing the racial good judgment inner to Western representations of maternality a minimum of seeing that Romanticism. She formulates a conception of "racial patriarchy" within which the circumscription of copy inside of racial borders engenders what she calls the "race mom" in literary and cultural narratives. Pairing literary events rarely thought of together--Modernism and the Harlem Renaissance--Doyle finds that this determine haunts the openings of numerous glossy novels and initiates their experimental narrative trajectories. Figures resembling the slave mom in Invisible guy, Lena Grove in mild in August, Mrs. Dedalus in Ulysses, and Sethe in liked, Doyle exhibits, include racial, sexual, and metaphysical anxieties which sleek authors divulge reconfigure, and try to surpass. employing heterogeneous fabrics, together with kinship reports, phenomenology, and histories of slavery, Bordering at the physique lines the symbolic operations of the "race mom" from Romanticism and nineteenth-century biology to eugenics and twentieth-century fiction. A step forward in race and gender conception, a racial reconfiguration of modernism, and a reinterpretation of discourses of nature in view that Romanticism, the e-book will interact a large spectrum of readers in literary and cultural reviews.
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Extra resources for Bordering on the Body: The Racial Matrix of Modern Fiction and Culture (Race and American Culture)
Slavery exaggerates but also confirms and clarifies the interconnections among these practices. Through an account of slavery, then, we can further explain the engagement of African American modernist writers with racialized mother figures and metaphysical assumptions. At the same time, we can see how ideologies of slavery prefigure and prepare the way for the cult of racialized motherhood typical of modern eugenics, 28 Of Race and Woman: Eugenics, Motherhood, and Racial Patriarchy which white modernist writers participate in and critique to varying degrees.
Studies were duly undertaken, such as that by the sociologist Edward A. Ross in 1912, to gather data on the new immigrants. 26 Ross was among those who believed that such a burden must be minimized by immigration restrictions that would block the entrance of "unfit" races. 27 Perhaps most influential on the question of immigration was Harry Laughlin, a protege of the prominent eugenicist and biologist Charles Davenport and onetime superintendent of the Eugenics Records Office at Cold Spring Harbor on Long Island.
William Withers Moore might well have said "I told you so" to these panic-stricken early twentieth-century spokespersons. 52 In the discourse of positive eugenics, idealized notions of race culture reserved a special place for racially fit, procreative women. In his popular (if not strictly scientific) book Parenthood and Race Culture, in a chapter tided "The Supremacy of Motherhood," Saleeby links maternal supremacy to racial supremacy. " In her role as mother, "Woman is Nature's supreme instrument of the future"—that is, the future of the race.