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Monday, March 27, 2000

John Kalb Attends Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States Conference

SALISBURY, MD---Dr. John D. Kalb, associate professor of English at Salisbury State University, recently attended the Multi-Ethnic Literature of the United States (MELUS) National Conference at Tulane University in New Orleans, where he presented a paper on Native American authors Leslie Marmon Silko and Linda Hogan. The theme for the MELUS 2000 Conference was "Multi-Ethnic Literatures and the Idea of Social Justice."

Kalb's essay, "Silko, Hogan, and the Loss of the Landscape," addressed the profound spiritual connections between Native American peoples and the physical landscape and the profound spiritual loss suffered by Native people when that landscape is damaged, altered or obliterated.

The essay argues that the devastation felt by those whose landscapes have been so altered is much more than that of the mere loss of territory or property and focuses on the ways in which Silko's and Hogan's claims about this spiritual connection between the land and people in their nonfiction writings provide richer readings of their respective novels, Ceremony and Solar Storms. While the main characters in these novels of healing, Tayo and Angel, work toward their own self-recoveries, they, more importantly attempt to recognize and recover this spiritual connection between the landscape and themselves and between the landscape and their people. In this way, the landscapes they seek to repair, recover and maintain share the role of central characters in the novels.


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