Ethnic Positioning in Southwestern Mixed Heritage Writing explores how Southwestern writers and visual artists provide an opportunity to turn a stigmatized identity into a self-conscious holder of valuable assets, cultural attitudes, and memories. The problem of mixed ethno-cultural heritage is a relevant feature of North American populations, faced by millions. Narratives on blended heritage show how mixed-race authors utilize their multiple ethnic experiences, knowledge archives, and sensibilities. They explore how individuals attempt to cope with the cognitive anxiety, stigmas, and perceptions that are intertwined in their blended ethnic heritage, family and social dynamics, and the renegotiation of their ethnic identity. The Southwest is a region riddled by Eurocentric and Colonial concepts of identity, yet at the same time highly treasured in the Frontier experiences of physical mobility and mental and spiritual journeys and transformations. Judit Ágnes Kádár argues that the process of ethnic positioning is a choice made by mixed heritage people that results in renegotiated identities, leading to more complex and engaging concepts of themselves.
Judit Ágnes Kádár is Director of International Relations at the Hungarian University of Sport Science.
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2 Multiracial Identity and the Southwest
2.1 “Core and Confluence”: The Geo-Cultural Context of Mixedblood Writing
2.2 From “Halfbreed” to “Crossblood”
2.3 Southwestern Authors and Artists of Mixed Heritage: An Overview
Chapter 3: Identity Negotiation in Southwestern Mixedblood Poetry: A Complementary Scope
Chapter 4: “Blood Trails,” Hidden Histories
4.1 The Beginning of Mixed Heritage Fictional Biographies: From Memoir to Postcolonial Storytelling
4.2 Laguna Pueblo Postcolonial Life-Writing and The Followers: Southwestern Mixed Heritage Autobiographies
Chapter 5: Multiracial Identity and its Narrative Formulation
5.1 Four Decades of Mixed-Race Writing: Altering Visions in Selected Prose Texts
5.2 A Psychological Insight into Blended Heritage Identity Construction
5.3 Cultural Identity Formulation in Multiracial Narratives
5.4 Narrative Identity: From Object to Subject
5.5 Nanabush’s “Pandora's Box of Possibilities”: Humor in Contemporary Multiracial Writing
Chapter 6: Some Interesting Cognitive Patterns
6.1 Grave Concerns and Nightwalkers
6.2 Sharpening Sights
6.3 “Restore me!”
6.4 “Indigenous Shapes of Water” in Mixedblood Writing
Chapter 7: Conclusion
8.1 Primary Sources
8.2 Secondary Sources
Half-blood, crossblood, mestizaje, inter-tribalism, the new cosmic race—the writing of mixed heritage in the US Southwest offers a “world of enchantment.” Like the mesmerizing landscapes in New Mexico, the book provides a well-rounded account of “mixedblood messages” that resonate with the poetry, prose, fiction, and memoir of Paula Gunn Allen, Leslie Marmon Silko, Gerald Vizenor, Louis Owens, Joy Harjo, Marla Allison, Diego Romero, and others. Rich in contextual framework and complex in textual reading, it dives into the interwined layers of history, culture, psychology, and politics of multiracial identity. For anyone interested in mixed heritage and its narrative formulation, this book will prove to be an indispensable road map to the literary landscapes in the Southwest.
Ethnic Positioning in Southwestern Mixed Heritage Writing by Judit Ágnes Kádár focuses on an exciting topic that is appealing even for a psychologist. I believe the approach it provides is quite innovative. Reading this book is an enriching experience, for it illuminates the highly complex nature of identity and explores the path along which it is unfolding and developing.