The Famished Road after Postmodernism : African Modernism and The Politics of Subalternity. / Mathuray, Mark.

In: Callaloo, Vol. 38, No. 5, 10.2015, p. 1100-1117.

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The Famished Road after Postmodernism : African Modernism and The Politics of Subalternity. / Mathuray, Mark.

In: Callaloo, Vol. 38, No. 5, 10.2015, p. 1100-1117.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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@article{2bc27851c3f047c39eee40b65498640b,
title = "The Famished Road after Postmodernism: African Modernism and The Politics of Subalternity",
abstract = "If postmodernism has been the dominant critical prism through which The Famished Road has been analysed, how do we approach that text in the wake of the demise of the postmodern moment? In this paper, I will argue that there is much to suggest that The Famished Road{\textquoteright}s allegiances, ideological and formal, lie with modernism rather than with postmodernism, which, in part, raises the broader theoretical incompatibility of postmodernism with postcolonialism. Postcolonialism, I will argue, has never been, could never be, postmodernist. It has always been intractably modernist. By paying close attention to aspects of the novel that have often been elided in criticism of the novel: its advocacy of Fanon{\textquoteright}s {\textquoteleft}spontaneous{\textquoteright} political resistance, its stylistic hybridity, and its reliance on meta-narratives (i.e. the conjoining of ethics and aesthetics through the Enlightenment categories of Truth, Justice and Beauty), I will explore how we might re-read the novel after postmodernism. ",
keywords = "The Famished Road, Ben Okri, modernism, postmodernism, postcolonialism, resistance, African aesthetics, modernity.",
author = "Mark Mathuray",
note = "Mark Mathuray lectures in English Literature at Royal Holloway, University of London. He graduated from the University of Cambridge as a Gates Scholar and held a Leverhulme Fellowship at Royal Holloway. He has published various articles on religious discourses and sublime dissonances in African literature and the figuring of homosexuality in African fiction. His monograph, On the Sacred in African Literature: Old Gods and New Worlds was published in 2009. His present research interests include: the exploration of the modernist strategies, both aesthetic and political, of a range of African texts; the connections and disconnections between postcolonialism and queer theory; and the resurgence of modernist ethics and aesthetics in contemporary fiction. ",
year = "2015",
month = oct,
doi = "10.1353/cal.2015.0147",
language = "English",
volume = "38",
pages = "1100--1117",
journal = "Callaloo",
issn = "1080-6512",
number = "5",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - The Famished Road after Postmodernism

T2 - African Modernism and The Politics of Subalternity

AU - Mathuray, Mark

N1 - Mark Mathuray lectures in English Literature at Royal Holloway, University of London. He graduated from the University of Cambridge as a Gates Scholar and held a Leverhulme Fellowship at Royal Holloway. He has published various articles on religious discourses and sublime dissonances in African literature and the figuring of homosexuality in African fiction. His monograph, On the Sacred in African Literature: Old Gods and New Worlds was published in 2009. His present research interests include: the exploration of the modernist strategies, both aesthetic and political, of a range of African texts; the connections and disconnections between postcolonialism and queer theory; and the resurgence of modernist ethics and aesthetics in contemporary fiction.

PY - 2015/10

Y1 - 2015/10

N2 - If postmodernism has been the dominant critical prism through which The Famished Road has been analysed, how do we approach that text in the wake of the demise of the postmodern moment? In this paper, I will argue that there is much to suggest that The Famished Road’s allegiances, ideological and formal, lie with modernism rather than with postmodernism, which, in part, raises the broader theoretical incompatibility of postmodernism with postcolonialism. Postcolonialism, I will argue, has never been, could never be, postmodernist. It has always been intractably modernist. By paying close attention to aspects of the novel that have often been elided in criticism of the novel: its advocacy of Fanon’s ‘spontaneous’ political resistance, its stylistic hybridity, and its reliance on meta-narratives (i.e. the conjoining of ethics and aesthetics through the Enlightenment categories of Truth, Justice and Beauty), I will explore how we might re-read the novel after postmodernism.

AB - If postmodernism has been the dominant critical prism through which The Famished Road has been analysed, how do we approach that text in the wake of the demise of the postmodern moment? In this paper, I will argue that there is much to suggest that The Famished Road’s allegiances, ideological and formal, lie with modernism rather than with postmodernism, which, in part, raises the broader theoretical incompatibility of postmodernism with postcolonialism. Postcolonialism, I will argue, has never been, could never be, postmodernist. It has always been intractably modernist. By paying close attention to aspects of the novel that have often been elided in criticism of the novel: its advocacy of Fanon’s ‘spontaneous’ political resistance, its stylistic hybridity, and its reliance on meta-narratives (i.e. the conjoining of ethics and aesthetics through the Enlightenment categories of Truth, Justice and Beauty), I will explore how we might re-read the novel after postmodernism.

KW - The Famished Road, Ben Okri, modernism, postmodernism, postcolonialism, resistance, African aesthetics, modernity.

U2 - 10.1353/cal.2015.0147

DO - 10.1353/cal.2015.0147

M3 - Article

VL - 38

SP - 1100

EP - 1117

JO - Callaloo

JF - Callaloo

SN - 1080-6512

IS - 5

ER -