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Title: Struggle and identity : Chicano/a literature in "the space between"
Author: Hepworth, C. N.
Awarding Body: University College of Swansea
Current Institution: Swansea University
Date of Award: 1995
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This thesis challenges Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.'s contention that the United States in disuniting. He believes the forces of multiculturalism have caused the national voice to splinter, resulting in a "space between" the nation's various cultural groups. These allegations are brought under scrutiny through an examination of Chicano/a literature, the product of an ethnic group which itself inhabits a "space between". Conceiving of the cultural group as an occupant of a particular "space", the psychological attributes of the centre and the border are examined through the notion of the territorial imperative. Particular attention is paid to the issue of the border because Chicano/as are deemed occupants of a border culture. The contention is made that it is impossible for the ethnic groups to exist in isolation from one another. In the same way that the Chicano/a holds Mexico and the United States in mutual relationship, so the dual constructs of ethnicity and history constitute an incontrovertible bond. Allegations that the Spanish language is divisive are examined and textual analysis reveals that the boundaries of the Chicano/a's language are not as restrictive as some have claimed. The literature, in fact, illustrates that cultural boundaries are permeable and it is the reader who is invited to examine the preconceptions he or she might bring to the act of reading about a cultural "other". Far from promoting disunity, then, it is maintained that the voice of the Chicano/a operates to show that the "space between" should be understood as a site of cultural negotiation. In the self-professed land of the brave, the White Anglo-Saxon Protestant populace must summon the courage to approach its cultural borders. Only then will the separate "spaces" be United.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available