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Documenting the UndocumentedLatino/a Narratives and Social Justice in the Era of Operation Gatekeeper$
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Marta Caminero-Santangelo

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062594

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062594.001.0001

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The Caribbean Difference

The Caribbean Difference

Imagining Trans-Status Communities

Chapter:
(p.107) 3 The Caribbean Difference
Source:
Documenting the Undocumented
Author(s):

Marta Caminero-Santangelo

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813062594.003.0004

Chapter 3 extends the analysis of a developing, constructed sense of group identity around issues of the trauma of illegality by looking at fiction by Caribbean Latino/a writers. Drawing on Anthony Appiah’s explication of the notion of “partial cosmopolitanism,” the chapter argues that Caribbean-origin writers seek ways of extending a group identity so that it tentatively includes both undocumented immigrants and other groups of Latinos (such as Cubans or Puerto Ricans) who are not subjected in the same way to the conditions and risks of “illegality.” Junot Díaz’s story “Negocios” (in Drown) puts the trope of family at the center of contested versions of latinidad that might—or might not—successfully create communities of solidarity around both U.S. citizens and undocumented Latinos. Cristina García’s A Handbook to Luck and Julia Alvarez’s young adult novel Return to Sender construct an ethics of solidarity across difference that recognizes immigration status as a problem that requires an ethical response across national-origin lines.

Keywords:   partial cosmopolitanism, Caribbean writers, Latino, illegal, Junot Díaz, Cristina García, Julia Alvarez, Drown, A Handbook to Luck, Return to Sender, Anthony Appiah

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