After Empire: Scott, Naipaul, Rushdie

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9780226304755: After Empire: Scott, Naipaul, Rushdie

In After Empire Michael Gorra explores how three novelists of empire—Paul Scott, V. S. Naipaul, and Salman Rushdie—have charted the perpetually drawn and perpetually blurred boundaries of identity left in the wake of British imperialism.

Arguing against a model of cultural identity based on race, Gorra begins with Scott's portrait, in The Raj Quartet, of the character Hari Kumar—a seeming oxymoron, an "English boy with a dark brown skin," whose very existence undercuts the belief in an absolute distinction between England and India. He then turns to the opposed figures of Naipaul and Rushdie, the two great novelists of the Indian diaspora. Whereas Naipaul's long and controversial career maps the "deep disorder" spread by both imperialism and its passing, Rushdie demonstrates that certain consequences of that disorder, such as migrancy and mimicry, have themselves become creative forces.

After Empire provides engaging and enlightening readings of postcolonial fiction, showing how imperialism helped shape British national identity—and how, after the end of empire, that identity must now be reconfigured.

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Review:

In After Empire, author Michael Gorra examines the issues of national identity and ethnicity as they pertain to the post-colonial novels about and out of India. While he touches briefly on earlier chroniclers of the Raj such as Rudyard Kipling and E.M. Forster, he concentrates on three of the most prominent novelists of the post-colonial era: Paul Scott, V.S. Naipaul, and Salman Rushdie. Mr. Gorra begins with Scott's devastating portrait of the twilight years of the Raj in India, The Raj Quartet, a series of novels written by an Englishman about the British rule of India. He then moves on to the great chronicler of the Indian diaspora,V. S. Naipaul, who is Indian by ancestry and Trinidadian by nationality. Finally, he turns his microscope on the work of the brilliant Bombay-born, London-based Salman Rushdie who sees the consequences of the diaspora event as creative rather than destructive.

After Empire is academic but accessible, and it is fascinating in what it has to say about the effects of Imperialism on the identities of those who colonized and those who were ruled. For anyone interested in the literature of the emerging world, Michael Gorra's book provides a base for thinking about post-colonial literature in general, and not just that from India alone.

From Library Journal:

Gorra (The English Novel at Mid-Century, St. Martin's, 1990) has written a thoughtful, thoroughly researched, jargon-free study of postcolonial literature. She concentrates her study on Paul Scott's Raj Quartet; several works of V.S. Naipaul, including A House for Mr. Biswas (1961) and A Bend in the River (1979); and Salman Rushdie's Midnight's Children (1981) and The Satanic Verses (1989). Scott's and Rushdie's novels are set in India after independence, and Naipaul's works describe Indians living outside India. Gorra considers the characters' (both Indian and English) struggles to find personal and cultural identities after Indian independence. There are bibliographic notes for each chapter but no bibliographies. A significant contribution to postcolonial scholarship; highly recommended for academic British studies collections.?Judy Mimken, Boise P.L., Id.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Michael Gorra
Editorial: The University of Chicago Press, United States (1997)
ISBN 10: 0226304752 ISBN 13: 9780226304755
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Descripción The University of Chicago Press, United States, 1997. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. New edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. This study explores the ways in which three novelists of empire - Paul Scott, V.S. Naipaul and Salman Rushdie - have charted the perpetually drawn and perpetually blurred boundaries of identity in the wake of British imperialism. Arguing against a model of cultural identity based on race, Gorra begins with Scott s portrait, in The Raj Quartet , of the character Hari Kumar - a seeming oxymoron, an English boy with a dark brown skin , whose very existence undercuts the belief in an absolute distinction between England and India. He then considers the different figures of Naipaul and Rushdie, two novelists of the Indian diaspora. Whereas Naipaul s long and controversial career is said to map the deep disorder spread by imperialism and its passing, Rushdie demonstrates that certain consequences of that disorder, such as migrancy and mimicry, have themselves become creative forces. The readings of postcolonial fiction included in this study demonstrate how imperialism helped shape British national identity, and how, after the end of empire, that identity must be reconfigured. Nº de ref. de la librería AAH9780226304755

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Michael Gorra
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Descripción The University of Chicago Press, United States, 1997. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. New edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. This study explores the ways in which three novelists of empire - Paul Scott, V.S. Naipaul and Salman Rushdie - have charted the perpetually drawn and perpetually blurred boundaries of identity in the wake of British imperialism. Arguing against a model of cultural identity based on race, Gorra begins with Scott s portrait, in The Raj Quartet , of the character Hari Kumar - a seeming oxymoron, an English boy with a dark brown skin , whose very existence undercuts the belief in an absolute distinction between England and India. He then considers the different figures of Naipaul and Rushdie, two novelists of the Indian diaspora. Whereas Naipaul s long and controversial career is said to map the deep disorder spread by imperialism and its passing, Rushdie demonstrates that certain consequences of that disorder, such as migrancy and mimicry, have themselves become creative forces. The readings of postcolonial fiction included in this study demonstrate how imperialism helped shape British national identity, and how, after the end of empire, that identity must be reconfigured. Nº de ref. de la librería AAH9780226304755

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