Examines the work of prolific Dominican American writer Julia Alvarez.
This is the first collection of critical essays on the works of Dominican American author Julia Alvarez. A prolific writer of nearly two dozen books of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and children's literature, Alvarez has garnered numerous international accolades, including the impressive F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Literature. She was one of only ten poets invited to write for President Obama's inauguration in 2009, and her In the Time of the Butterflies was selected as a National Endowment for the Arts "Big Read," putting her in the company of Mark Twain, Zora Neale Hurston, and Harper Lee. Yet, despite Alvarez's commercial success and flourishing critical reputation, much of the published scholarship has focused on her two best-known novels—In the Time of the Butterflies and How the García Girls Lost Their Accents.
Moving beyond Alvarez's more recognizable work, the contributors here approach her wider canon from different points of access and with diverging critical tools. This enriches current discussions on the construction of selves in life writing, and nonfiction more generally, and furthers our understanding of these selves as particular kinds of participants in the creation of nation and place. In addition, this book provides fresh insight for transnational feminist studies and makes a meaningful contribution to the broader study of the gendered diaspora, as it positions Alvarez scholarship in a global context.
At the University of West Georgia, Rebecca L. Harrison is Assistant Professor of English. At the University of West Georgia, Emily Hipchen is Associate Professor of English.
"…this volume as a whole represents a big step in Julia Alvarez studies. Inhabiting La Patria succeeds in analyzing carefully and celebrating sincerely one of the great writers of our time, and, as a collection, provides a compelling history of twentieth-century Dominican Republic and its diaspora." — Letras Femeninas