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Women's Studies

2015

1920s

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Full-Text Articles in African American Studies

Jessie Fauset’S Not-So-New Negro Womanhood: The Harlem Renaissance, The Long Nineteenth Century, And Legacies Of Feminine Representation, Meredith Goldsmith Dec 2015

Jessie Fauset’S Not-So-New Negro Womanhood: The Harlem Renaissance, The Long Nineteenth Century, And Legacies Of Feminine Representation, Meredith Goldsmith

English Faculty Publications

Fauset’s texts offer a repository of precisely what critic Alain Locke labeled retrograde: seemingly outdated plotlines and tropes that draw upon multiple literary, historical, and popular cultural sources. This essay aims to change the way we read Fauset by excavating this literary archive and exploring how the literary “past” informs the landscape of Fauset’s fiction. Rather than viewing Fauset’s novels as deviations from or subversive instantiations of modernity, I view them as part of a long nineteenth-century tradition of gendered representation. Instead of claiming a subversiveness that Fauset might have rejected or a conservatism that fails to ...