Trances, Dances and Vociferations: Agency and Resistance in Africana Women's Narratives

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Nonspecific Binding
  • Copyright: 2000-12-08
  • Publisher: Routledge
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Trances, Dances and Vociferationsprovides a compelling feminist analysis of gender politics in the works of four major Africana women writers: Toni Morrison, Michelle Cliff, Assia Djebar, and Paule Marshall. Nada Elia explores the way in which black women characters use conjuring, double entendre, and song to empower, liberate and determine their own female insurgency. She also explains how African and Afrodiasporic women have been forced to rewrite history and substitute a communal and individual wholeness for alienation and separation in many different settings, from Algeria to Oklahoma. Ranging over works including Marshall'sPraisesong for the Widow,Djebar'sA Sister to Scheherazade,Cliff'sNo Telephone to Heavenand Morrison'sJazzandBeloved,Elia offers essential and provocative insights into the works of some of our most influential Africana women authors today.

Author Biography

Nada Elia is currently Visiting Associate Professor and Scholar of Afro-American Studies at Brown University. She has held numerous teaching positions at Purdue, Tufts, Western Illinois University, and the University of Massachusetts

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix
Abbreviations xi
Pre-Text: In the Beginning All Was Sound
``The Fourth Language'': Subaltern Expression in Assia Djebar's Fantasia: An Algerian Cavalcade and A Sister to Scheherazade
``The Memories of Old Women'': Alternative History in Michelle Cliff's No Telephone to Heaven and Free Enterprise
``I'm Breaking My Vow of Silence'': Reclaiming Speech in Paule Marshall's Praisesong for the Widow and Daughters
``Under the Weight of Memory and Music'': Contact Zones and Healing in Toni Morrison's Song of Solomon and Paradise
Conclusion: ``With Nomad Memory and Intermittent Voice'': The Africana Women's Aesthetic Tradition
Bibliography 157(8)
Index 165

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