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Sitting in DarknessMark Twain's Asia and Comparative Racialization$
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Hsuan L. Hsu

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479880416

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479880416.001.0001

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Post-racial Twain?

(p.167) Conclusion
Sitting in Darkness

Hsuan L. Hsu

NYU Press

This book has explored Mark Twain's accounts of structural racism and processes of comparative racialization across geographical regions and scales, linking the antebellum South with the multiracial spaces of the U.S. West and the imperial contexts of the “American Pacific.” From Ah Sin and Pudd'nhead Wilson to Huckleberry Finn, Those Extraordinary Twins, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court, Twain's career-long archive of writings about U.S. relations with Asia offer some of his era's most complex literary accounts of anti-Chinese discrimination and provide important points of comparison with his more familiar critiques of antiblack racism and European colonialism. They also illuminate issues of structural inequality that extend through the eras of Jim Crow, Civil Rights, and multiculturalism into the present and future predicaments of a nation that is at once racially stratified and immersed in the rhetoric of “post-racial” racism.

Keywords:   racism, Mark Twain, racialization, Asia, discrimination, colonialism, structural inequality, post-racial racism

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