Settling Down and Settling Up: The Second Generation in Black Canadian and Black British Women’s Writing
Comparing second generation children of immigrants in black Canadian and black British women’s writing, Settling Down and Settling Up extends discourses of diaspora and postcolonialism by expanding recent theory on movement and border crossing. While these concepts have recently gained theoretical currency, this book argues that they are not always adequate frameworks through which to understand second generation children who wish to reside "in place" in the nations of their birth.
Considering migration and settlement as complex, interrelated processes that inform each other across multiple generations and geographies, Andrea Katherine Medovarski challenges the gendered constructions of nationhood and diaspora with a particular focus on Canadian and British black women writers, including Dionne Brand, Esi Edugyan, and Zadie Smith. Re-evaluating gender and spatial relations, Settling Down and Settling Up argues that local experiences, often conceptualized through the language of the feminine and the domestic in black women’s writings, are no less important than travel and border crossings.
- World Rights
- Page Count: 208 pages
- Dimensions: 6.5in x 0.8in x 9.3in
"Particularly valuable in Medovarski’s work is her conceptualization of the second generation in terms of its expansion of the "conditions of possibility" (a concept borrowed from Michel de Certeau). In other words, Medovarski conceives of the second generation not just as a resistant force, but instead as a transformative one that can work to "remake citizenship on other, more ethical or more inclusive terms" and thereby create nations that are "‘more’ than they currently are." Medovarski takes her cue from a wonderful selection of texts, intervening nicely into already established discourses surrounding some of the more well-known texts."
Canadian Literature, August 2020
"With a focus on generation and gender, Settling Down and Settling Up covers new ground. The book’s inclusion of both black Canadian and black British material is highly original, if not unique within the field."
James Procter, School of English, Newcastle University
"Settling Down and Settling Up fills a gap in discourses on second-generation citizens and possibilities of social citizenship, while extending the boundaries of the discourse on ‘diaspora-spaces’ and diaspora in place."
Sharon Morgan Beckford, Department of English, Rochester Institute of Technology
Author InformationAndrea Katherine Medovarski is Assistant Professor in the Department of Humanities at York University.
Table of contents
Introduction. “Settling Down and Settling Up”: Conceptualizing the Second Generation
1. “A Kind of New Vocabulary”: Dionne Brand’s (Re)Mappings in What We All Long For
2. “Belonging Is What You Give Yourself”: Tessa McWatt’s Out of My Skin
3. “I Knew This Was England”: Myths of “Back Home” in Andrea Levy’s Fruit of the Lemon
4. “The Abuses of Settlement”: Esi Edugyan’s The Second Life of Samuel Tyne
5. “When Roots Won’t Matter Anymore”: Zadie Smith’s White Teeth
Conclusion: “Conditions of Possibility”
Subjects and Courses