Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
John Fante's Ask the DustA Joining of Voices and Views$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Stephen Cooper and Clorinda Donato

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780823287864

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823287864.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM FORDHAM SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.fordham.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Fordham University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

“A Ramona in Reverse”: Writing the Madness of the Spanish Past in Ask the Dust

“A Ramona in Reverse”: Writing the Madness of the Spanish Past in Ask the Dust

(p.83) “A Ramona in Reverse”: Writing the Madness of the Spanish Past in Ask the Dust
John Fante's Ask the Dust

Daniel Gardner

Fordham University Press

At the turn of the twentieth century, real estate boosters seeking to promote southern California drew upon the national popularity of Helen Hunt Jackson’s 1884 novel Ramona, in particular its fantasy of the Spanish past. The fantasy’s colonial discourse deployed stereotypes marked by an ambivalence that romanticized “going Spanish” even as it portrayed Mexican communities as burdens necessitating subjugation through various strategies including repatriation. John Fante’s Ask the Dust (1939) repudiates the stereotype of the colonial fantasy by critically mimicking the Spanish past. By reversing the discourse of Ramona, Ask the Dust exposes the imperialist nostalgia of the fantasy, recognizes the instability of the regional sense of colonial authority, protests the racial injustice of the discourse, and recuperates the voice of the Other that the fantasy seeks to silence.

Keywords:   Ask the Dust, colonial discourse, imperialist nostalgia, Ramona, repatriation, Spanish past, stereotype

Fordham Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .