Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ph.D.

Degree Granting Department

English

Major Professor

Diane Price-Herndl

Keywords

African American, Ethnic, Fantasy, Latino, Native American, Science Fiction

Abstract

Science Fiction/Fantasy and the Representation of Ethnic Futurity examines the influence of science fiction/fantasy (SFF) as applied to twentieth century and contemporary African American, Native American and Latina/o texts. Bringing together theories of racial identity, hybridity, and postcolonialism, this project demonstrates how twentieth century and contemporary ethnic American SFF authors are currently utilizing tropes of SFF to blur racial distinctions and challenge white/other or colonizer/colonized binaries. Ethnic American SFF authors are able to employ SFF landscapes that address narratives of victimization or colonization while still imagining worlds where alternate representations of racial and ethnic identity are possible.

My multicultural approach pairs authors of different ethnicities in order to examine common themes that occur in ethnic American SFF texts. The first chapter examines SFF post-apocalyptic depictions of racial and ethnic identity in Samuel Delany's Dhalgren and Gerald Vizenor's Bearheart: The Heirship Chronicles. Chapter two explores depictions of ethnic undead figures in Octavia Butler's Fledgling and Daniel José Older's "Phantom Overload." Chapter three addresses themes of indigenous and migrant colonization in Celu Amberstone's "Refugees" and Rosura Sánchez and Beatrice Pita's Lunar Braceros: 2125-2148.

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