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Grant number: FT-229436-15

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Cameron Leader-Picone
Kansas State University (Manhattan, KS 66506-0100)

Rearticulating Race in Twenty-First Century African American Literature

Summer research and writing on African American Studies and American Literature.

My book analyzes the meaning of race in African American literature of the twenty-first century through concepts such as post-racialism, post-blackness, and post-soul aesthetics. Considering the work of Colson Whitehead, Alice Randall, Toni Morrison, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Jesmyn Ward, I examine the push and pull within that literature between optimism over the gains of the Civil Rights and post-Civil Rights eras and pessimism over the persistence of structural racism and discrimination. While there has been substantial scholarship assessing both the social and economic progress that has been made by African Americans and its limitations, my book's unique focus on the "post" moment in twenty-first century African American literature allows me to address not just the issue of how a rhetoric of progress should be understood, but also its implications for revising and rearticulating racial identities in a new century.

Project fields:
African American Studies; American Literature

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2015 – 9/30/2015