Transcultural Visions of Identities in Images and Texts

Transatlantic American Studies


1. Edition, 2008
318 Pages

ISBN: 978-3-8253-5560-9
Product: Book
Edition: Hardcover
Subject: Anglistik/Amerikanistik
Series: American Studies – A Monograph Series, Volume No.: 175
Available: 18.12.2008

Keywords: intercultural studies, transcultural studies, American Studies, transnational studies, Post-Nationalist American Studies, United States, Paradigms of


As the editors hope, this volume, that is primarily the outcome of an international conference in honor of Günter H. Lenz at the Humboldt University Berlin in February 2005, will provide some answers to Shelley Fisher Fishkin’s question “What would the field of American Studies look like if the transnational rather than the national were at its center?” The editors also express the hope that it will represent another major step in challenging the methodological nationalism of American Studies. The contributions engage with literary, political and cultural practices in America, past and present, set out to transcend long established paradigms of an American “exceptionalism” or critical approaches that hold on to the notion of a core Americanness as a single nationalist mythology of the United States. “America” then functions as a signifier that is configured in and by its presence outside and beyond the national borders of the United States of America. The overall thrust of our volume draws upon concepts of the “New American Studies,” especially “Post-Nationalist American Studies.” The re-definition and re-positioning of American Studies point towards significant shifts in research approaches, away from nation-state based myths as well as spatial configurations and signal a dynamically transnational and intercultural conceptualization of U.S. culture. Such turn in American Studies interprets “America” as a multiplicity of interpellations for which no single position has precedence and all interact in “a genuinely dialogic notion of cultural critique and of inter- and postnational American culture studies in order to bring into view the always two-directional processes of transculturation” as well as constructions, deconstructions and reconstructions of competing visions, and ideologies inside and outside the terrain of the United States (Lenz).

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Roxana Oltean in: European Journal of American Studies, 2009 [10], online 27.7.2009, URL: http://ejas.revues.org/7614

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Thomas Austenfeld in: American Literary Scholarship, 2009, 476f