Posts and Pasts: A Theory of Postcolonialism

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SUNY Press, May 16, 2001 - Literary Criticism - 274 pages
In Posts and Pasts: A Theory of Postcolonialism, Alfred J. Lopez argues for a formulation of postcolonial studies which diverges in three significant ways from current academic and institutional practices: 1) the postcolonial as diasporic, constituted by a series of dispersed and irregular criticisms not at all containable within a single set of parameters, whether historical, geographical, or socioeconomic; 2) the postcolonial as a distinct ontological moment in the life of a nation or people, in which it conceives itself as doubly haunted--on the one hand by the "memory in advance" of a collective national future and on the other by its colonial past; and 3) the postcolonial as a distinct phenomenological moment, a radical break in the history of a relation between lords and bonds-women and -men.

Going further than previous studies to address the postcolonial as a diasporic body of texts and discourses, it looks at a remarkable variety of writers--Joseph Conrad, Wilson Harris, Jose Marti, Edward Kamau Brathwaite, Michelle Cliff, J. M. Coetzee, Franz Fanon, Gabriel Marcia Marquez, and Salman Rushdie.


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Page 20 - What each of these literatures has in common beyond their special and distinctive regional characteristics is that they emerged in their present form out of the experience of colonization and asserted themselves by foregrounding the tension with the imperial power, and by emphasizing their differences from the assumptions of the imperial centre.

About the author (2001)

Alfred J. Lopez is Assistant Professor of English at Florida International University.