Macdonald, Virginia L. 1942- (Gina Macdonald)
Macdonald, Virginia L. 1942-
PERSONAL: Born 1942; married Andrew Macdonald (an educator). Education: University of Texas, Ph.D.
ADDRESSES: Office—Languages & Literature Department, Nicholls State University, 251 Peltier Hall, P.O. Box 2023, Thibodaux, LA 70310. E-mail—[email protected]
CAREER: Nicholls State University, Thibodaux, LA, associate professor.
UNDER NAME GINA MACDONALD
(With husband, Andrew Macdonald) Mastering Writing Essentials, Prentice Hall Regents (Upper Saddle River, NJ), 1996.
James Clavell: A Critical Companion, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1996.
Robert Ludlum: A Critical Companion, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 1997.
(With Andrew Macdonald and MaryAnn Sheridan) Shape-shifting: Images of Native Americans in Recent Popular Fiction, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 2000.
(With Andrew Macdonald and MaryAnn Sheridan) Shaman or Sherlock? The Native American Detective, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 2002.
(Editor) British Mystery and Thriller Writers since 1960, Gale (Detroit, MI), 2003.
(With Andrew Macdonald) Scott Turow: A Critical Companion, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 2005.
SIDELIGHTS: Publishing under the name Gina Macdonald, Virginia L. Macdonald is an English professor who has written, co-written, or edited books about American Indians in fiction, Jane Austen, and espionage and mystery writers and their works. For example, in her Robert Ludlum: A Critical Companion, Macdonald writes in-depth about seventeen of Ludlum's "spy" books, focusing on such serious themes as the role of the individual in a democracy and the nature of evil. She is also the author of a similar book about writer James Clavell and coauthor with her husband, Andrew Macdonald, of Scott Turow: A Critical Companion.
In Shape-shifting: Images of Native Americans in Recent Popular Fiction Macdonald again collaborates with her husband to examine the portrayal of Native Americans in fiction, from mystery writer Tony Hillerman's detectives Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn to lesser-known characters such as those who first appeared in Andre Norton's "Time Agent" series in the mid-twentieth century. The authors begin their survey of Native-American characters with an examination of narratives that take place in the days of the American frontier, and then turn their focus to the self-images of native peoples. The authors also discuss in detail how to read contemporary Native-American fiction.
Writing in the American Indian Quarterly, Michael Tosko noted that the authors' "humor, insight, and sincerity are displayed in every chapter, making Shapeshifting a pleasure to read."
In Shaman or Sherlock? The Native American Detective the Macdonalds focus solely on Native Americans in detective fiction, discussing such literary topics as how the geographic regions depicted relate to a detective's style and, as noted in a Nicholls State University Online news release by Allison Fontenot, "the way the author's choice of tribe determines whether a scientific Sherlock or spiritual Shaman dominates."
The Macdonalds have also collaborated on editing Jane Austen on Screen, a collection of essays discussing books by the great English writer and how they have been adapted for screen. Reviewing this work for the Women's Review of Books, Brooks Robards commented that "the individual essays often have more insight than the undertaking as a whole."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Indian Quarterly, summer, 2001, Michael Tosko, review of Shape-shifting: Images of Native Americans in Recent Popular Fiction, p. 484.
Women's Review of Books, April, 2004, Brooks Robards, review of Jane Austen on Screen, p. 14.
Nicholls State University Web site, http://www.nicholls.edu/ (February 15, 2002), Allison Fontenot, "Nicholls State Professor Has Fifth Book Published."