1st Edition

The Routledge Companion to Literature and Social Justice

Edited By Masood Ashraf Raja, Nick T. C. Lu Copyright 2024
    588 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The Routledge Companion to Literature and Social Justice is a comprehensive and multi- purpose collection on this important topic. With contributors working in various fields, the Companion provides in- depth analyses of both the cumulative and emergent issues, obstacles, praxes, propositions, and theories of social justice.

    The first section offers a historical overview of major developments and debates in the field, while the following sections look in more detail at the key traditions and show how literature and theory can be applied as analytical tools to real- world inequalities and the impact of doing so. The contributors provide reviews of major theoretical traditions, including Marxism, feminism, Critical Race Theory, disability studies, and queer studies. They also share literary analyses of influential authors including W. E. B. Du Bois, Yang Kui, Edwidge Danticat, Octavia Butler, and Rivers Solomon amongst others. The final section considers future possibilities for theory and action of justice, drawing specifically from theories and knowledges in decolonial, Indigenous, environmental, and posthumanist studies.

    This authoritative volume draws on the intersections between literary studies and social movements in order to provide scholars, students, and activists alike with a complete collection of the most up- to- date information on both canonical and emerging texts and case studies globally.

    List of Contributors


    Note to the Readers

    Beyond Awareness: Introduction

    Part I: Introducing Social Justice

    Chapter 1: Pedagogy Advancing Social Justice through the Study of Literature: Basic Pedagogical Principles

    Mark Bracher

    Chapter 2: Literary Analysis: Social Justice: A Philosophical Introduction

    Nick T. C. Lu and Hue Woodson

    Chapter 3: Praxis: The Solitary Reader and the General Strike

    Andrew David King

    Part II: Theoretical Interventions in Social Justice

    Chapter 4: Feminism and Social Justice: Translating Private Problems into Public Problems

    Robin Truth Goodman

    Chapter 5: Disabled Diaspora: Transnational Models of Disability Justice

    Anna Hinton

    Chapter 7: Critical Race Theory: A Theoretical Overview

    Aja Y. Martinez

    Chapter 8: Ecocriticism: From the Wilderness Idea to Just Multispecies Futures

    Delia Byrnes

    Chapter 9: Marxist Theory

    Peter Hudis

    Chapter 10: Postcolonial Theory: A Theoretical Overview

    Hella Bloom Cohen

    Chapter 11: Bringing Theory Home: Decoloniality and the Global South

    Antonette Talaue-Arogo

    Chapter 12: A Short History of Liberation Theology: From Latin America to the United States, Palestine, and India, 1968-1989

    Hue Woodson

    Part III: Social Justice and Antiracism

    Chapter 13: Praxis: Life Among the Lowly: The African American Struggle to Make a Home in America

    Kavon Franklin

    Chapter 14: Literary Analysis: W. E. B. Du Bios, James Cone, and the Black Christ: The History and Legacy of Black Liberation Theology

    Kevin Pyon

    Chapter 15: Literary Analysis: "To Be on Fire for Justice": James Cone’s Legacy and Cornel West’s Prophetic Commitments to Liberational-Theological Social Justice

    Hue Woodson

    Chapter 16: Literary Analysis: Navigating the Gaze: The Gaze, Double-Consciousness, and the Politics of Passing in Nella Larsen’s Passing

    Emily Fontenot

    Chapter 17: Literary Analysis:  Black Futurities Beyond the Human in Rivers Solomon’s An Unkindness of Ghosts

    Kristen Reynolds

    Chapter 18: Literary Analysis: From Politics to Ethical Aesthetics: Literary Peace Activism, Social Emotions and Poetic Justice in Australian Minorities Fiction

    Jean-Francois Vernay

    Chapter 19: Pedagogy: Challenging Racial and Religious Stereotypes through Literature

    Nisreen Yamany

    Chapter 20: Pedagogy: Examining Students’ Critical-Ethical Interruptions of Racial Discourse in Singapore Literature Classrooms

    Nah Dominic and Suzanne Choo

    Part IV: Social Justice for Diverse Bodyminds

    Chapter 21: Praxis: Trans Youth Movements

    Eli Erlick

    Chapter 22: Praxis: Making Sense of the Disability Autonomy and Collectivity Binary: A Review of Informal Disability Justice Pedagogy (IDJP) across Cultures

    Sona Kazemi and Hemachandran Karah

    Chapter 23: Literary Analysis: "It Hurts, That’s All I Know": Hyperempathy, Race and Gender Disability, and the Possibilities of Social Animacy in Octavia E. Butler’s Parable of the Sower

    Jennifer Cho

    Chapter 24: Praxis: Postcolonial Feminism: Women’s Digital Activism and Its Challenges in South Asia with a Focus on Pakistan

    Naila Sahar

    Chapter 25: Literary Analysis: Re-Defining Dalit Female Identity: A Case Study of Dalit Feminist Movement and Dalit Women’s Writings

    Rashmi Attri and Neha Arora

    Chapter 26: Pedagogy: "World"-Traveling in the Classroom as an Enactment of Critical Pedagogies

    Julia Reade

    Part V: Social Justice and Democracy

    Chapter 27: Pedagogy: Teaching Literature as Equipment for Living Democratically

    Ryan Skinnell

    Chapter 28: Literary Analysis: Collaging the Vox Populi: The Crowdsourced Poetics of Hong Kong’s Anti-Extradition Law Protest

    Wayne CF Yeung

    Chapter 29: Literary Analysis: Blasphemy, Religiosity, and Digitality: An Enchanted Pakistan

    Iqra Cheema

    Chapter 30: Literary Analysis: "Without Inspection" and the Poetics of Abolition

    Ryan Augustyniak

    Chapter 31: Praxis: Romania’s "White Revolution": A Case Study on Social Movements for Civil Rights and Democracy in Eastern Europe

    Cringuta Irina Pelea

    Part VI: Global Justice and Anti-Imperialism

    Chapter 32: Literary Analysis: Happiness, Social Justice, and the Bildungsroman: On the Postcolonial Biopolitics of Waiting for Happiness

    Jefferey R. Di Leo

    Chapter 33: Literary Analysis: Class-Nation, Nation-Class: Anticolonial Marxism as Justice Politics for Redistribution and Recognition in Yang Kui’s "Newspaper Carrier" and "A Model Village"

    Nick T. C. Lu

    Chapter 34: Literary Analysis: To Read for Suffering: Using the Film Burn! To Challenge Imperialism

    Alexander C. Ruhsenberger

    Chapter 35: Speak Up and Dance: The Convergence of Palestinian and African/Black Struggles in Afrodabke

    Ha Dong

    Chapter 36: Pedagogy: The 1947 Partition Archive: A Contemporary Pedagogical Resources to Teach the Rival History of the Partition of India

    Priyanka Bisht and Merlyn Sharma

    Part VII: Future Justice for a World More Than Human

    Chapter 37: Literary Analysis: Artificial Beings, Servitude and Rights: Kazuo Ishiguro’s Klara and the Sun

    Pramod K. Nayar

    Chapter 38: Literary Analysis: Toward an Oceanic Taiwanese Imagery: Syaman Rapongan’s Sea Writing and Liao Hongji’s Cetacean Narrative

    Pei-yin Lin

    Chapter 39: Praxis: The Standing Rock Water Protectors: Indigenous Sovereignty as a Refutation to Extractive Settler Colonialism

    Jeff Gessas

    Chapter 40: Pedagogy: Teaching Climate Change under Capitalist Realism

    Claire Ravenscroft



    Masood Ashraf Raja was formerly Associate Professor of Postcolonial Studies at the University of North Texas, USA. His publications include Democratic Criticism: Poetics of Incitement and the Muslim Sacred (2023).

    Nick T. C. Lu is Assistant Professor of English at Marist College, USA. His work has appeared in Research in African Literatures.