Taking an original approach to American literature, Christopher Krentz examines 19th-century writing from a new angle: that of deafness, which he shows to have surprising importance in identity formation. He demonstrates that deaf and hearing authors used writing to explore their similarities and differences, trying to work out the invisible boundary, analogous to Du Bois's color line, that Krentz calls the "hearing line." Discusses authors including James Fenimore Cooper, Lydia Huntley Sigourney, Herman Melville, and Mark Twain.
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Title: Writing Deafness: The Hearing Line in Nineteenth-Century American Literature
Author: Christopher Krentz
Publisher: University of North Carolina Press, The
Date Published: July 2007
Table of Contents:
I Write What You Speak: Writing and the Emergence of the American Deaf Community, 1816-1835 21
Essaying the Unsayable: The Deaf Presence in Antebellum American Literature 63
Powers of Deafness: Deaf Characters by Hearing Authors 99
A Sense of Two-ness: Deaf Double Consciousness at Midcentury 131
Playing with the Hearing Line: Deafness, Passing, and Laughter 171
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