Postcolonial Theory: A Critical Introduction

Postcolonial Theory: A Critical Introduction

Postcolonial Theory: A Critical Introduction

Postcolonial Theory: A Critical Introduction

Excerpt

In the last decade postcolonialism has taken its place with theories such as poststructuralism, psychoanalysis and feminism as a major critical discourse in the humanities. As a consequence of its diverse and interdisciplinary usage, this body of thought has generated an enormous corpus of specialised academic writing. Nevertheless, although much has been written under its rubric, 'postcolonialism' itself remains a diffuse and nebulous term. Unlike Marxism or deconstruction, for instance, it seems to lack an 'originary moment' or a coherent methodology. This book is an attempt to 'name' postcolonialism--to delineate the academic and cultural conditions under which it first emerged and thereby to point to its major preoccupations and areas of concern.

There are correspondingly two parts to the book--the first offers an account of postcolonialism's academic and intellectual background, and the second elaborates the themes and issues which have most engaged the attention of postcolonial critics. In the main, the intellectual history of postcolonial theory is marked by a dialectic between Marxism, on the one hand, and poststructuralism/postmodernism, on the other. So . . .

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