About the Book

In »Call Me Ishmael«, Charles Olson exclaims »SPACE to be the central fact to man born in America«. Indeed, from the start, history and identity in America have been intricately tied to issues of space: from the idea of the »city upon a hill« to the transnational (soft) power of the United States, space has always served as an important parameter of power gained or lost and of the struggles to maintain or resist it.

With contributions that range from the construction of America in (European) academic discourses to children's fiction, this collection provides an extensive and insightful study of how space influences our understanding of America.

from Katharina Christ's Review in Amerikastudien/American Studies 60, no. 1 (2016)

"Fuchs and Holub's volume impressively covers a wide range of topics; from theoretical musings about the academic field of American Studies to reflections on the U.S.-Canadian border and relationship, representations of American spaces in movies and novels, dystopian comics, and even to science. The ongoing discussion of spaces and spatiality as well as of the opposition of space and place are certainly enriched by this volume, which offers new insight into a complex topic and features innovative, substantial, and inspiring essays."

from Julia Sattler's Review in Arbeiten aus Anglistik und Amerikanistik 38, no. 2 (2013)

"Overall, the volume covers a wide array of issues, text types, literary and cultural American spaces. It draws on an extensive body of theoretical ideas by scholars such as Butler, Said, Soja, Foucault[, and] de Certeau. The articles give an overview of how America is 'placed' with regard to its national and transnational, central and marginal spaces, but also with regard to dystopian visions and scientific challenges. Each of these topics in itself would deserve further investigation, as would the co-dependency of time and space in the context of American cultural studies. At the same time, the scope of the volume remains limited to Western conceptions of the United States and Canada, as well as constrained to a rather 'discipline-specific' understanding of time and space."

Table of Contents

Placing America: Constructing America through Time and Space (Maria-Theresia Holub)

I.Constructing America from Afar

Performing America Abroad: No Name City and the Haunted Spaces of Transnational America (Leopold Lippert)
America, the Threat of Time: Sigmund Skard and Early American Studies (Ida Jahr)

II.Real Places and Imaginary Spaces

Setting the Scene: L. M. Montgomery's Imaginative Island Landscapes (Julia van Lill)
Fallujah Manhattan Transfer: The Sectarian Dystopia of DMZ (Georg Drennig)
There's No Place Like Fiction: Narrative Space and Metalepsis in Stephen King's "Umney's Last Case" (Jeff Thoss)
The Black Hole at the Heart of America? Space, Family, and the Black Hallway in House of Leaves (Michael Fuchs)

III.Drawing Borders

Meeting at the Border: The Canadian 'Two Solitudes' in Bon Cop, Bad Cop (Yvonne Völkl)
'Romanized Gauls': The Significance of the United States and the Canada-U.S. Border for Canadian National Identity Construction (Evelyn P. Mayer)

IV. Marginalized Spaces

Spaces of Native American Ghostliness in Thomas Pynchon's Mason & Dixon (Diana Benea)
Getting a Name: Searching for a Mixed-Blood Identity in Sherman Alexie's Flight (Madalina Prodan)
This Space Called Science: Spatial Approaches, Border Negotiations, and the Revision of Cultural Maps in Contemporary Popular Culture (Judith Kohlenberger)