Literary Precedents for Homeland

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Jakes's novels involve prodigious research. In writing Homeland, he worked with historians, librarians, and genealogists, and with museum directors at Ellis Island, the Statue of Liberty, the University of South Carolina, Grinnell College, the Buffalo Bill Museum, the George Eastman Museum, the Military Museum at West Point, Katz Beer Institute, and Chicago Historical Bookworks. Sometimes his "name-dropping" of important people, places, and events takes on the aspect of not wanting to omit a single piece of research data, rather than contributing to the plot of the novel.

Precedents for portraying the immigrant experience and their assimilation into the "melting pot" of a American culture are numerous.

In 1782 French immigrant Michel Guillaume Jean de Crevecoeur wrote a collection of essays entitled Letters from an American Farmer. These essays praised the quality of rural life in colonial America. In one essay entitled "What Is an American?" he wrote, "Here, individuals of...

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This section contains 597 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Homeland Short Guide
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Homeland from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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