In his study of nationalism, Konstantin Symmons-Symonolewicz describes the process of national awakening as a phase of nationalism as a social movement in which a new identity must be defined in terms of the country’s cultural heritage and in which its respective groups are activated around new social values and principles of organization (21-22). He sees two concomitant activities as comprising this process: the work of scholars in “rediscovering” and reevaluating that nation’s culture and the work of “men of letters,” in giving creative expression to its distinctive individuality as a human collectivity. He suggests that the main responsibility falls on the scholars to demonstrate the antiquity and respectability of the nation by probing into its history and prehistory and by analyzing its literature and its language as a mirror of its culture. Here I would like to extend this analysis by examining the role, not of the men but of the women of letters in contributing to the probing of national consciousness, to the exposing of injustices at a national level, and to the development of viable new concepts of national identity that reaffirm a belief in the nation as moral community, in the specific context of the impact of immigration in the formation of Brazilian identity.
How to Cite:
Espadas, E., (2007). Destination Brazil: Immigration in Works of Nélida Piñón and Karen Tei Yamashita. Middle Atlantic Review of Latin American Studies. 12(1), pp.51–62. DOI: http://doi.org/10.23870/3