Performing Hybridity

Performing Hybridity

Performing Hybridity

Performing Hybridity

Synopsis

Amid the modern-day complexities of migration and exile, immigration and repatriation, notions of stable national identity give way to ideas about cultural "hybridity". The authors represented in this volume use different forms of performative writing to question this process, to ask how the production of new political identities destabilizes ideas about gender, sexuality, and the nation in the public sphere.

Contributors use forms such as the essay, poem, photography, and case study to examine historically specific cases in which the notion of hybridity recasts our ideas of identity and performance: the struggle for Aboriginal land rights in Australia; Bahian carnival; the creolization and pidginization of language in the Caribbean world; queer videos; and others.

Excerpt

The discourse of hybridity has numerous international points of emergence. It emerges in the twentieth century alongside autochthonous nationalisms in the struggles for territorial and cultural sovereignty across Francophone, Lusophone, Iberian, Dutch, German, and Anglophone colonies. Although the foundational discourses of hybridity lie in the anthropological and biological discourses of conquest and colonization, the modern move to deploy hybridity as a disruptive democratic discourse of cultural citizenship is a distinctly anti-imperial and antiauthoritarian development. The antecedents for this discourse lie in an intricate negotiation between colonial abjectness and modernity's new historic subjects, who are both colonizer and colonized. Always framing the struggles for democratic rights and sovereignty in the twentieth century is the language of internationalism, shaping global colonial policies as well as international solidarity movements.

The internationalism embedded in contemporary discourses of hybridity and its mobilizing political energy open up new ways of perceiving cultural and political practices. Through historical excavation, cultural reclamation, and aesthetic appropriations across different national contexts, new forms of internationalism are articulated. However, these discourses are embedded in older tensions between nationalist sentiments and articulations of world citizenship that have operated globally through one of the earliest ideologies of internationalism, that of empire. Other influential international discourses that underlie twentieth-century critiques of autochthonous identities are the . . .

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