Second-Generation West Indian Women, Television and the Dialogical Self

Kamille Gentles-Peart, Roger Williams University

Document Type Article

Published in: Gramma: Journal of Theory and Criticism, vol. 18, 2010.


Employing the Bakhtinian concept of the dialogical self, this article exam­ines how second-generation West Indian immigrant women negotiate their multiple cultural and national positions in the United States. Further­more, it examines the manner in which the American media, particularly television, are reflective and constitutive of this process of identity forma­tion. The article speaks to the theme of the journal issue in several ways. It highlights the polyphonic voices in the individual, and how these "selves" influence and are influenced by the cultural communities to which the individual belongs. With the "third world" immigrant as its subject, the article also necessarily addresses the relationship between global/ mi­gratory individuals and their diasporic locales, and explores the individual and collective positioning of non-Western "minorities" in dominant West­ern communities.