Why is the nation in a postcolonial world so often seen as a motherland? This pathbreaking study, 'Stories of women: Gender and narrative in the postcolonial nation', explores the perenially fascinating relationship between gender icons and foundational fictions of the nation in different postcolonial spaces. The leading critic and theorist of postcolonial writing Elleke Boehmer's work on the crucial intersections between independence, nationalism and gender has already proved canonical in the field. Stories of women combines her keynote essays on the mother figure and the postcolonial nation, along with incisive new work on male autobiography, 'daughter' writers, the colonial body, the trauma of the postcolony, and the nation in a transnational context. Focusing on Africa as well as South Asia, and sexuality as well as gender, Boehmer offers fine close readings of writers ranging from Achebe, Okri and Mandela to Arundhati Roy and Yvonne Vera, shaping these into a critical engagement with theorists of the nation like Fredric Jameson and Partha Chatterjee. Moving beyond cynical deconstructions of the postcolony, the book mounts a bracing reassessment of the postcolonial nation as a site of potential empowerment, as a 'paradoxical refuge' in a globalised world. 'Stories of women' acts on its own impassioned argument that postcolonial and nation-state studies address substantively issues hitherto raised chiefly within international feminism. It is likely to prove a landmark study in the field. The book will draw interest from readers and researchers of postcolonial, international and women's writing; of nation theory, colonial history and historiography; and of Indian, African, migrant and diasporic literatures.
Author: Elleke Boehmer Publisher: Manchester University Press Published: 06/01/2009 Pages: 256 Binding Type: Paperback Weight: 0.79lbs Size: 9.21h x 6.14w x 0.53d ISBN: 9780719068799
About the Author
Elleke Boehmer is Hildred Carlile Professor in English at Royal Holloway, University of London