Learning from Experience

2002
Author(s)
Publisher
University of California Press
Learning from Experience

In Learning from Experience, Paula Moya offers an alternative to some influential philosophical assumptions about identity and experience in contemporary literary theory. Arguing that the texts and lived experiences of subordinated people are rich sources of insight about our society, Moya presents a nuanced universalist justification for identity-based work in ethnic studies.

This strikingly original book provides eloquent analyses of such postmodernist feminists as Judith Butler, Donna Haraway, Norma Alarcón, and Chela Sandoval, and counters the assimilationist proposals of minority neoconservatives such as Shelby Steele and Richard Rodriguez. It advances realist proposals for multicultural education and offers an understanding of the interpretive power of Chicana feminists including Cherríe Moraga, Gloria Anzaldúa, and Helena María Viramontes. Learning from Experience enlarges our concept of identity and offers new ways to situate aspects of race, gender, class, and sexual orientation in discursive and sociopolitical contexts.

About the Author

PAULA M. L. MOYA, is the Danily C. and Laura Louise Bell Professor of the Humanities and Professor of English at Stanford University. She is the Burton J. and Deedee McMurtry University Fellow in Undergraduate Education and a 2019-20 Fellow at the Center for the Study of Behavioral Sciences.

Moya’s teaching and research focus on twentieth-century and early twenty-first century literary studies, feminist theory, critical theory, narrative theory, American cultural studies, interdisciplinary approaches to race and ethnicity, and Chicanx and U.S. Latinx studies.

She is the author of The Social Imperative: Race, Close Reading, and Contemporary Literary Criticism (Stanford UP 2016) and Learning From Experience: Minority Identities, Multicultural Struggles (UC Press 2002) and has co-edited three collections of original essays, Doing Race: 21 Essays for the 21st Century (W.W. Norton, Inc. 2010), Identity Politics Reconsidered (Palgrave 2006) and Reclaiming Identity: Realist Theory and the Predicament of Postmodernism (UC Press 2000). 

Previously Moya served as the Director of the Program of Modern Thought and Literature, Vice Chair of the Department of English, Director of the Research Institute of Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, and also the Director of the Undergraduate Program of the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. 

She is a recipient of the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching, a Ford Foundation postdoctoral fellowship, the Outstanding Chicana/o Faculty Member award. She has been a Brown Faculty Fellow, a Clayman Institute Fellow, a CCSRE Faculty Research Fellow, and a Clayman Beyond Bias Fellow.