By T. Sakhkhane

Exploring, among different subject matters, representations of the opposite, concepts followed to withstand such representations, the problems of id, nationalism, colonialism, feminism, subaltern experiences and the English language in the context of Empire, this booklet tasks a research of post-colonialism during the paintings of Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.

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Spivak and Postcolonialism: Exploring Allegations of Textuality

Exploring, among different subject matters, representations of the opposite, options followed to withstand such representations, the problems of identification, nationalism, colonialism, feminism, subaltern experiences and the English language in the context of Empire, this e-book initiatives a research of post-colonialism in the course of the paintings of Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.

Extra resources for Spivak and Postcolonialism: Exploring Allegations of Textuality

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29 Just as she has been devoted to the critique of the privileged parties in the colonial equation, Spivak has also attacked the self-imprisonment to which some postcolonial intellectuals have condemned themselves. The postcolonial should, she exhorts, learn how to challenge this fixed positionality in order to avert the breast-beating despair of having been colonial subjects. Indeed, they should unlearn their loss as their privilege by turning ‘their situations of lack into situations of excesses’;30 and by rejecting the logic of binary oppositions that relegates them to the margin, the periphery.

Her experience as a colonial woman has lent her criticism a sharper edge and instituted her as a representative of Third World Feminism that contests not only the complicities between imperialism and gender but also puts into question the claims upon her of such a representability. In ‘Finding Feminist Reading’, Spivak declared that ‘as female reader, I am haunted by another question’,19 which underscores the importance of the Feminist contribution to cultural critique as a whole. Owing to a multiplicity of subject positions, Spivak has treated the question of female subject constitution, the unequal division of labour, the representation of colonial women as part of the representation of Europe’s others in the texts of the Great Tradition.

22 If Ronald Dworkin admits the interdependence between politics, art, law and philosophy, Donald Davie chose to overlook the concept altogether. Such a working strategy is for Spivak completely beyond the point because no one can choose to bypass ideology. All one can hope for is to get a better understanding of it, and then, at a much more advanced stage, try to change for the best. Dovetailing quite neatly with the ideology-free stance represented by Toulmin, Davie and Dworkin is the position of Wayne Booth whose long-range aim, according to Spivak, points to the freedom of choice untrammelled by the restraints of ideology.

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