Postcolonial Witnessing: Trauma Out of Bounds

Postcolonial Witnessing: Trauma Out of Bounds

  • ISBN-13: 9781137543196
  • $92.98

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Despite a stated commitment to cross-cultural solidarity, trauma theory - an area of cultural investigation that emerged out of the 'ethical turn' affecting the humanities in the 1990s - is marked by a Eurocentric, monocultural bias. Now in paperback and with a Preface by Rosanne Kennedy, this book takes issue with the tendency of the founding texts of the field to marginalize or ignore traumatic experiences of non-Western or minority groups, and to take for granted the universal validity of definitions of trauma and recovery that have developed out of the history of Western modernity. Moreover, it questions the assumption that a modernist aesthetic of fragmentation and aporia is uniquely suited to the task of bearing witness to trauma, and criticizes the neglect of the connections between metropolitan and non-Western or minority traumas. Combining theoretical argument with literary case studies, Postcolonial Witnessing contends that the suffering engendered by colonialism needs to be acknowledged more fully, on its own terms, in its own terms, and in relation to traumatic First World histories if trauma theory is to redeem its promise of cross-cultural ethical engagement.

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