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Reviewed by: Cheryl LaGuardia, Research Librarian, Widener Library, Harvard University
Asian American Literature: Discourses and Pedagogies focuses on “the production, collection, and distribution of accessible high quality research on Asian American Literature for students, teachers, and the general public.” The editors aim to “provide a conduit for theoretical analyses to be used in the classroom to elevate discussions around Asian American literature and culture. [They] also hope the general reader seeking more information on this complex--and sometimes misrepresented--field will find the resources presented here enlightening.”
The resources presented in the latest volume, #6, 2015, include the editor’s “Introduction to Volume Six: An Identity Rebus,” the interview: “A “Monstress” Undertaking: an interview with Lysley Tenorio,” four articles (“The Illegible Pan: Racial Formation, Hybridity, and Chinatown in Sui Sin Far’s “‘Its Wavering Image,’” “From Raw to Cooked: Amy Tan’s “Fish Cheeks” through a Lévi-Straussian Lens,” “’Chinese don’t drink coffee!’”: Coffee and Class Liminality in Elaine Mar’s Paper Daughter,” and “Fictional and Fragmented Truths in Korean Adoptee Life Writing”), and a book Review of Pioneer Girl, by Bich Minh Nguyen. Three past special issues are highlighted on the site: Contemporary Asian American Literature and Popular Visual Culture, Introducing Mixed Heritage Asian American Literature, and Teaching Food and Foodways in Asian American Literature and Popular Culture, and the 10 most popular papers on the site are highlighted, as well.
The journal’s Aims and Scope statement eloquently describes why they publish this work: “The mission of Asian American Literature: Discourses & Pedagogies is to provide accessible peer-reviewed essays to teachers and students of Asian American literature so that works of Asian American literature can be understood in their cultural, sociohistorical, and artistic contexts. Mindful that a variety of sources are helpful and even necessary when teaching or learning about literature, we accept work in a range of forms from traditional literary analysis and explication to essays specifically detailing classroom pedagogy in relation to works of Asian American literature. We seek to make scholarship “accessible” in a variety of ways. First, we do not charge for subscriptions and ensure that our journal is accessible to anyone with internet access, not just to those with access to proprietary databases. Secondly, we encourage submissions that seek to hold to the highest standards of clarity in written English and to avoid unnecessary jargon while still utilizing the great range of theoretical and critical concepts available to contemporary scholars.” Based on what this reviewer sees, they are achieving their aims – recommended for academic and public libraries.