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About this product
- Description<p>In Racial Things, Racial Forms, Joseph Jonghyun Jeon focuses on a coterie of underexamined contemporary Asian American poets--Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Myung Mi Kim, Mei-mei Berssenbrugge, and John Yau--who reject many of the characteristics of traditional mirity writing, in particular the language of identity politics, which tends to challenge political marginalization without contesting more fundamental assumptions about the construction of racial form. In the poets' various treatments of things (that is, objects of art), one witnesses a confluence of heretofore discrete factors: the avant-garde interest in objecthood and the racial question of objectification. By refashioning avant-garde investigations of things into questions about how American discourse visualizes race in and on the body, these poets implicitly critique dominant modes of racial visibility, seeking alternatives to the unreflective stances that identity politics often unwittingly reproduces. At the heart of Jeon's project is the assumption thatracial form is continually recalibrated to elide ideological ambiguities and ambivalences in contemporary culture. Thus, rather than focusing exclusively on the subject--on interiority and individual experience-- Racial Things, Racial Forms also uses the calculated strangeness of the avant-garde art object as an occasion to emphasize the physical and visual oddness of racial constructs, as a series of everchanging, contemporary phemena that are in conversation with, but t entirely determined by, their historical legacy. In this critical study, Jeon argues that by invoking the foreignness of an avant-garde art object as a way to understand racial otherness, these writers model the possibility of a post-identity, racial politics that challenges how race is fundamentally visualized. In addition to appealing to those interested in Asian American studies and race in American literature, Racial Things, Racial Forms addresses readers interested in contemporary poetry, art, and visual culture, paying particular attention to the intersections between literary and visual art.
- Author BiographyJoseph Jonghyun Jeon is a visiting associate professor of English at Pomona College. He is a poetry editor for Kaya, a publisher of Asian/diasporic literature and culture, and serves on the editorial board of 1913: A Journal of Forms.
- Author(s)Joseph Jonghyun Jeon
- PublisherUniversity of Iowa Press
- Date of Publication15/02/2012
- SubjectLiterary Criticism
- Series TitleContemporary North American Poetry Series
- Place of PublicationIowa
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintUniversity of Iowa Press
- Content NoteIllustrations
- Weight327 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine18 mm
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