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Love and Narrative Form in Toni Morrison’s Later Novels

By Jean Wyatt

University of Georgia Press, 2017

Love and Narrative Form in Toni Morrison's Later Novels explores the interaction of love, narrative innovation, and reader response in Toni Morrison’s seven later novels. Love comes in a new and surprising shape in each of these later works, and each novel’s unconventional idea of love requires a new experimental narrative form. The novels’ complex narrative strategies draw out a reader’s convictions about love, about gender, about race – and then prompt the reader to reexamine them, so that reading becomes an active ethical dialogue between text and reader. Love and Narrative Form devotes a chapter to each of Morrison’s later novels: Beloved, Jazz, Paradise, Love, A Mercy, Home, and God Help the Child.


Experimental Subjectivities in Global Black Women’s Writing: Race and Narrative Innovation

Essay collection edited by Sheldon George and Jean Wyatt

Forthcoming Bloomsbury Press, 2024

Experimental Subjectivities in Global Black Women’s Writing: Race and Narrative Innovation, edited by Sheldon George and Jean Wyatt, brings together scholars from the UK, South Africa, Togo, the United States, France, Guyana, and Canada, to write on global Black women’s writing. The essays featured in this collection offer interpretations of contemporary black women’s writing in the UK, the Caribbean, Africa, and the United States. Forthcoming from Bloomsbury Press in 2024.

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Reading Contemporary Black British and African American Women Writers: Race, Ethics, Narrative Form

Essay collection edited by Jean Wyatt and Sheldon George 

Routledge, 2020

Contemporary African American and Black British Women Writers: Narrative, Race, Ethics brings together British and American scholars to explore how, in texts by contemporary Black women writers in the U.S. and Britain, formal narrative techniques express new understandings of race. Taken together, these essays demonstrate that Black women writers from both sides of the Atlantic borrow literary techniques from one another to describe the workings of structural racism in the daily lives of Black subjects.


Risking Difference: Identification, Race and Community in Contemporary Fiction and Feminism

By Jean Wyatt

SUNY Press, 2004

Risking Difference looks at the dynamics of identification, envy, and idealization in fictional narratives by Margaret Atwood, Angela Carter, Sandra Cisneros, Toni Morrison, and others, as well as in nonfictional accounts of cross-race relations by white feminists and feminists of color.


Reconstructing Desire: The Role of the Unconscious in Womens’ Reading and Writing

By Jean Wyatt

University of North Carolina Press, 1990

Reconstructing Desire: The Role of the Unconscious in Womens’ Reading and Writing explores the function of the unconscious in reading and creative processes. The book asks if reading can change the reader - specifically, if women, through reading, can change the unconscious fantasy structures that govern desire. Reconstructing Desire uses models of the unconscious developed by Freud, Lacan, and Kristeva to elucidate the complex interactions between a text and a reader's unconscious. As such, it seeks to explain the continuing hold of romantic love fantasies like Jane Eyre over many female readers while arguing that works like Kate Chopin’s The Awakening and Marilyn Robinson’s Housekeeping that reflect and transform readers’ fantasies offer women radical alternatives to dominant cognitive and social structures.

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