Reconstructing African Americans’ Ethnic Identity: a Study on Alice Randall’s the Wind Done Gone and Edward P. Jones’ the Known World
Rasiah, Ida Rochani Adi, Siti Chamamah Soeratno

The fact that slavery-themed novel has a power in American literary representation is inevitable. Two centuries since the publication of novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852), the reception of slavery-themed novels kept going on. It is not only reaccepted by the white authors, but also black authors. Even in the latest decade, early 21st century, slavery-themed novels kept exist with modern context in coloring the American literary genres. This study is intended to analyze two contemporary slavery-themed novels written by African Americans writers; Alice Randall’s The Wind Done Gone (2001) and Edward P Jones’ The Known World (2003). Through the post-colonial analysis, it found that the authors of those novels tried to reconstruct the African Americans’ ethnic identity as African descendants. Four ethnic characteristics became the markers of African Americans’ ethnic identity that expressed on those novels are; the pattern of kin and social embededness, the language, the local arts, and the last is the beliefs. These four markers became the central struggle of African Americans to define themselves as ‘other’ in United States, and also to survive from the white hegemonic culture empire.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijll.v4n1a12