Close reading of the counter-discursive strategies used by two authors


Colonial discourses were characterized by their Manichean/Manichaean constructions of
identity—self-other, civilized-uncivilized, center-periphery—that determined how the colonized
was viewed and his or her inferior place in the colonial world. Write an essay in which you
examine how your chosen works of postcolonial literature challenge and subvert these discourses.
This exam question asks you to discuss the counter-discursive strategies used by two authors
studied in this course. The aim of this question is to test your ability to critically evaluate the
issues addressed in this course through an analysis based on a close reading. Therefore, you have
to cite from your chosen novel and/or short stories to support your claims. Please use MLA
citations for these quotations
In your answer, and depending on your combination of texts, you can address the following: countercanonical
writing, race and class relations, language and voice, cultural hybridity (or its pejorative
counterpart, contamination), national identity, centre and periphery, etc. (Your choice of which
elements to address will be determined by your choice of texts.)
The word limit for this essay is 1 100 words, including quotations. (In other words, your essay should
range between 1 000 and 1 200 words – no more and no less.)
1. Foe and “His First Ball” and “The Affectionate Kidnappers”
2. Remembering Babylon and “His First Ball” and “The Affectionate Kidnappers”
3. Foe and Remembering Babylon
4. The Bone People and “His First Ball” and “The Affectionate Kidnappers”
Make sure to give a clear and compelling thesis. Remember that you should be able to make a
claim for the significance of the work. Be careful not to give mere plot summary. In other words,
rather than simply saying something happens in the novel, explain the relevance of these events for
the overall theme or themes under discussion.

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(USA, AUS, UK & CA  PhD. Writers)