Ambivalent Transnational Belonging in American Literature discusses the extent to which transnational concepts of identity and community are cast within nationalist frameworks. It analyzes how the different narrative perspectives in texts by Olaudah Equiano, Catharina Maria Sedgwick, Henry James, Jamaica Kincaid, and Mohsin Hamid shape protagonists’ complex transnational subjectivities, which exist between or outside national frameworks but are nevertheless interpellated through the nation-state and through particular myths about liberal, sentimental, or cosmopolitan subjects.

The notion of ambivalent transnational belonging yields insights into the affective appeal of the transnational as a category of analysis, as an aesthetic experience, and as an idea of belonging. This means bringing the transnational into conversation with the aesthetic and the affective so we may fully address the new conceptual challenges faced by literary studies due to the transnational turn in American studies.