The Defining Post Colonialism Cultural Studies Essay

Harmonizing to Loomba colonialism is non simply the enlargement of assorted European powers into Asia, Africa or the Americas from the sixteenth century onwards, it was the conquest and control of other people ‘s land and goods which has become perennial and widespread characteristic of human history ( p.2 ) . The term colonialism and imperialism are interchangeably used to mention to “ a colony in new state… a organic structure of people who settle in a new vicinity, organizing a community topic to or connected with their parent province ; the community so formed, dwelling of the original colonists and their posterities and replacements, every bit long as the connexion with the parent province is kept up ” ( Oxford English Dictionary ) . However the word “ postcolonial ” is non that easy to be defined and becomes a topic of ongoing argument. It might look that because “ the age of colonialism is over and because the posterities of once-colonialised peoples live everyplace, and the whole universe is postcolonial ” ( Loomba, 1989, p.7 ) .The term “ postcolonial ” besides needs to be used with cautiousness and makings because it can be compared with other constructs like the feminist construct of ‘patriarchy ‘ which is applicable to the extent that it indicates male domination over adult females ( ibid, p.18 ) .

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Ashcroft, Bill et Al in the book The Empire Writes Back: Theory and Practice in Post Colonial Literatures ( 1989 ) besides discusses about what post-colonial is and explains among others the theories of post-colonialism. The term ‘colonial ‘ can be used to cover all the civilization affected by the imperial procedure from the minute of colonisation to the present which concerns with the universe as it exists during and after the period of European imperial domination and the effects of this on modern-day literatures. These modern-day literatures include those produced in the African states, Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, Caribbean states, India, Malaysia, Malta, New Zealand, Pakistan, Singapore, South Pacific states, Sri Langka and even the USA ( p.2 ) .

Development of post-colonial literatures happens through several phases along with the phases of national or regional consciousness and the undertaking of asseverating difference from the imperial Centre ( ibid, p.5 ) . The first phase is the phase of the imperialism where Hagiographas were produced utilizing the linguistic communication of the imperial Centre because they were written chiefly by the literate elites which can besides be regarded as the representative of the imperial power. Examples include “ gentrified colonists ” ( Wentworth ‘s ‘Australia ‘ ) , travelers and excursionists ( Froude ‘s Oceana, and his The English in the West Indies or the travel journals of Mary Kingsley ) or the Anglo-indian and West African decision makers, soldiers and ‘boxwallah ‘ and their memsahibs ( volumes of memoirs ) . At this phase the authors non merely speak about the landscape, linguistic communication and civilization of the topographic point but besides stress the ‘home ‘ over the ‘native ‘ , the ‘metropolitan ‘ over the ‘provincial ‘ or ‘colonial ‘ and so on ( ibid, p.5 ) .

The 2nd phase involved literature produced by what can be termed as ‘under the imperial licence ‘ by the indigens or ‘outcasts ‘ like the English educated Indian upper category or the African ‘missionary literature ‘ . However, the establishment of ‘Literature ‘ in the settlement was still under the control of the imperial opinion category which prevented the authors from to the full researching their anti-Imperial potency. One of the illustrations given is a novel entitled Ralph Rashleigh by James Tucker. Basically, there are four station colonial theoretical accounts which can be used to analyze literary texts. The first theoretical account is the “ national ” or “ regional ” theoretical accounts which emphasize the typical characteristics of the peculiar national or regional civilization ; while the 2nd 1 is the race- based theoretical account which identifies certain shared features across assorted national literatures such as the common racial heritage in literatures of the African diaspora addressed by the “ Black Writing ” theoretical account. Comparative theoretical accounts of changing complexness which seek to account for peculiar lingual, historical and cultural characteristics across two or more post-colonial literature is the 3rd theoretical account while the last one which is instead comprehensive is the comparative theoretical accounts which argues things such as hybridity and syncreticity as the constituent elements of all post-colonial literature ( ibid. p.15 ) . Most of the times these theoretical accounts can at the same time be used to analyze the plants of postcolonial authors due to the imbrication of issues addressed. Other of import theoreticians of postcolonial literature include Edward Said, Gyaytri Spivak andA Homi Bhabha.


2 Major Preoccupations of Postcolonial Writers

One of the popular concerns of postcolonial authors is the patriotism. Several definitions of patriotism can be found in the lexicons and among them are the devotedness to the involvements or civilization of one ‘s state ; the belief that states will profit from moving independently instead than jointly stressing national instead than international ends ; and aspirations for national independency in a state under foreign domination ( hypertext transfer protocol: // ) .

Benedict Anderson in his book Imagined Communities: Contemplations on the Rise and Spread of Nationalism ( 1983 ) defines state as “ imagined, limited and autonomous communities ” . The “ imagined community ” is different from an existent community because “ it is non ( and, for practical grounds, can non be ) based on mundane face-to-face interaction between its members ” . Gellner ( 1964 ) as cited by Anderson makes a comparable point by stating that “ Nationalism is non the waking up of states to uneasiness: it invents states where they do non be. ” Anderson feels that Gellner is so dying to demo that patriotism masks under false pretensions that he assimilates “ innovation ” to “ fiction ” and “ falseness ” , instead than to “ conceive ofing ” and “ creative activity ” . In a manner Gellner is connoting that the being of “ true ” communities can be well juxtaposed to states. Anderson nevertheless thinks that all communities larger than aboriginal small towns of face-to-face contact ( and possibly even these ) are imagined. Communities are to be distinguished, non by their falseness or genuineness, but by the manner in which they are imagined. States are a little thought shared by a geographically limited country of people that despite its restriction has influence and power in its greater part and sovereignty over its people. A state “ is imagined because the members of even the smallest state will ne’er cognize most of their fellow-members, run into them, or even hear of them, yet in the heads of each, lives the image of their “ Communion ” and regardless of the existent inequality and development that may predominate in each, the state is ever conceived as a deep, horizontal chumminess. Ultimately it is this fraternity that makes it possible, over the past two centuries, for so many 1000000s of people, non so much to kill, as volitionally to decease for such limited imaginings.

State became more and more realized as lingual diverseness, spiritual authorization and traditional monarchies faded. Anderson believes that his creative activity of “ imagined communities ” became possible because of “ print-capitalism ” . Capitalist entrepreneurs printed their books and media in the slang ( alternatively of sole book linguistic communications, such as Latin ) in order to maximise circulation. As a consequence, readers talking assorted local idioms became able to understand each other, and a common discourse emerged. Anderson argued that the first European nation-states were therefore formed around their “ national print-languages ” .

Quayum ( 2009 ) in his introductory note for “ Writing A Nation Essays on Malayan Literature ” stated that patriotism implies idealisation of the state that has many positive qualities in its ideal province. Besides making the sense of belonging, solidarity and shared rank for all its citizens where all members recognise common rights and responsibilities towards one another, it besides creates a sense of strong belief and trueness among members to certain shared artifacts of the state. Quayaum nevertheless believes that to some extent patriotism may besides be unsafe because there is a chance that the idealization of the state can turn into devotion and nationalist sentiment can deteriorate into demagogy, divisiveness, absolutism, radicalism and racism which may take to sectarian haughtiness and destruct the originative bond of the integrity of humanity. The treatment on patriotism will be farther explored after this with mention to the novel Green is the Colour by Lloyd Fernando and three short narratives taken from A Rainbow Feast New Asian Short Stories edited and introduced by Mohammad A. Quayum.

Hybridity is another of import preoccupation of postcolonial authors. It refers to “ the creative activity of new transcultural signifiers within the contact zones produced by colonisation ” ( Ashcroft, Griffiths, Tiffin ( 1998 ) cited in Toro and Heidemann ‘s Introduction Rethinking Post-Colonialism and Hybridity retrieved from hypertext transfer protocol: // ) . The issue of station colonial hybridity has been explored by R.K Narayan in his novel The Guide ( 1958 ) . In one juncture, Raju the supporter who besides becomes a tourer usher shows the statues of British Godheads and describes the alterations the British brought to Malgudi to the tourers. He besides says to the tourers “ aˆ¦ If you look you will look the full Ramayan carved along the wall aˆ¦ ” . Marco, Rosie ‘s hubby is besides another illustration of station colonial loanblend in the narrative. He is portrayed to ever be dressing in western manner, researches archaeology but remains patriarch in covering with his married woman. He ignores caste bias while get marrieding Rosie the girl of a “ Devdashi ” who responds to his advertizement in happening a suited adult female to be his married woman.

Diaspora, really much related to hybridity is signified as a corporate injury, a ostracism, where one dreamed of place but lived in expatriate. Other peoples abroad who have besides maintained strong individualities have, in recent old ages, defined themselves as diasporas, though they were neither active agents of colonisation nor inactive victims of persecution.

Besides issues on patriotism and hybridity, other popular issues addressed by the postcolonial authors include gender issues such as the portraiture of female characters and the intervention they received from the dominant opposite gender, diaspora, racial and spiritual intolerance, linguistic communication issue, development of power and last but non least love.

3 Patriotism in Lloyd Fernando ‘s Green is the Coloring material

Lloyd Fernando ‘s Scorpion Orchid ( 1976 ) and Green is the Colour ( 1993 ) provide important penetrations into the province of belonging and nation-formation, every bit good as the unostentatious worlds of racial spiritual segregation and political relations of bias which are still rampant in the modern-day Malayan ideological landscape ( Qayum and Nam, 2009 ) .

Although the exact timeframe for Lloyd Fernando ‘s novel Green is the Colour has non been clearly stated, it is rather possible that the historical context which Fernando is indirectly mentioning to was the Malayan Racial Riot of 13th May1969. The novel exposed the unstable relationship between the racial and spiritual groups of Malaysia which continues to stalk the socio-cultural cloth of the state up until today ( Ng, 2009 ) . Therefore, the word picture of force, biass between different races and rolling vigilance man in the countryside were rather existent and became a common sight at that clip. The consequence of the racial agitation which is referred in the novel as the “ unsightly scab ” in Malayan history can straight be felt by the multicultural citizens represented by characters like Siti Sara, Dahlan, Yun Ming and Gita. The writer shows how their lives and relationships are affected by the political force in the state and how they react to the events in their personal and interpersonal lives ( Quayum, 2012 ) .

The doomed, cross-cultural relationship between Siti Sara and Yun Ming and their contemplations to the “ unsure ” state of affairs in the state become the focal point of the novel. Yun Ming, a 2nd coevals Chinese is a civil retainer working for the Ministry of Home Affairs who seeks justness by working from within the authorities. He lusts for Sara, an oversea- alumnus lector learning in a local Prime Minister university from the first minute he sees her at a concert. Since the first meeting, Yun Ming seems to experience a sort of attractive force towards Siti Sara and ever attempts to happen ways or chances to be near her. Siti Sara who at first attempts non to do her feeling obvious due to her position as Omar ‘s married woman eventually responds and begins to happen comfort and peace in Yun Ming ‘s company who is described as soft and moderate and looks at things from a “ human point of position ” and believes in the “ brotherhood of all ” . His earnestness and trustiness are evidenced through his willingness to put on the line his life in administering alleviation goods in the Malay countries even during the extremum of racial public violence. The apprehension and tolerance that Sara ne’er gets from her partner leads Sara to be profoundly in love with the Chinese cat. Despite all the challenges and disapproval from others ( except from Lebai Hanafiah, Siti Sara ‘s male parent ) , the twosome is about successful in their relationship until Yun Ming is caught under the direction of the scoundrel in the novel- Panglima. Other character include Dahlan, a renegade Malay attorney who persistently inquiries Malay domination and privileges ensuing in him being rejected by his community ( Ng, 2009, p.119 )

Siti Sara is really important in the novel non merely as a heroine but besides a storyteller. As such, the narrative is chiefly narrated from her point of view except for Chapter 9 which is narrated by Lebai Hanafiah, Siti Sara ‘s male parent and Chapter 15 by Dahlan a attorney. Sara ‘s male parent has surely becomes instrumental in determining her into a broad, tolerant and accommodating adult female ( ) . Although described as non holding a “ unitary, parochial sense of individuality ” like her lover Yun Ming, nor follow a “ massive theoretical account of patriotism ” like her hubby Omar ( ) , Siti Sara ‘s character is used to gain the writer ‘s doctrine of family and understanding among multi-racial Malaysia ( ) . Fernando tries to advance a tolerant, selfless “ Bangsa Malaysia ” in this novel through the word picture of the characters of Yun Ming, Siti Sara and Lebai Hanafiah. Through the narrative, Fernando non merely shows the consequence of explosive and intractable racial public violences on the full state but besides on the set of closely linked persons and how their relationships are affected by the event peculiarly by their contesting positions of the state. The reading of state or “ imagined community ” harmonizing to him would be a community that is open- minded, receptive and tolerant towards each other merely like the relationship of Siti Sara and Yun Ming unlike Panglima and Omar who represent the one-sided and massive trusters of the state. Panglima being an of import individual in the authorities favours the formation of a hierarchal Malay Malaysia while Omar who join a spiritual extreme group is in hunt of an Islamic Malaysia. Panglima believes in forced cultural assimilation and of the position that because Malays are the indigens of the land, it is incumbent upon the non-Malays to follow the Malay civilization. He wants the state to hold a individual set of values, and he fights for it tooth-and-nail to the terminal, to the extent that he becomes viciously pitiless towards all those who stand in his manner ( Quayum, 2012 ) .

Even though a portion of Panglima ‘s “ individual set of values ” can still be used as a mention, it is wise to let for some freedoms for the multiracial society to pattern what they believe to be right and appropriate without allowing their contesting positions affect their judgements and relationship with other. As Quayum, ( 2007 ) puts it, every bit long as we consider love as the base of all metaphysics and humanity and as the highest rule in life, we can ne’er travel incorrect in self-refashioning ourselves as a state or a society. Fernando enunciated his firmly-held belief in the integrating of races and faiths in his two novels Scorpion Orchid ( 1976 ) and Green is the Colour ( 1993 ) while dexterously knocking communal and dissentious political relations which necessarily result in intolerance and devastation. These two novels provide an penetration into the province of belonging and nation-formation every bit good as the unostentatious worlds of racial-religious segregation and political relations which are regarded as sensitive but anyhow still relevant to be discussed up boulder clay now ( Ng, 2009 ) . Even though Fernando seems to trust on the incidents of the 1969 racial public violence to build the ideological background of the novel, it is nevertheless inaccurate to generalise it as picturing the worlds of the tensenesss. Alternatively, a careful reading will uncover that the novel is in fact picturing the ideological province of personal businesss in Malaysia of the 80 ‘s and 90 ‘s, a state of affairs which Fernando positions as dire to the state ‘s wellness due to the communal, damaging dockets of certain political groups. Fernando tries to convey to attending the unsafe way towards which the state is heading, a way that is progressively burying its multicultural make-up in the move towards racial-religious homogeneousness ( ibid. p.118-119 ) .

Some critics feel that Fernando may hold stereotyped his adult female characters in both the Scorpion Orchid ( Sally or Salmah ) and Green is the Colour ( Siti Sara ) as weak and unable to protect themselves over the domination of the male characters. A clear illustration is when both adult females characters are raped towards the terminal of the narrative. Ng ( 1989 ) commented on this issue with respect to the character of Salmah or Sally. Harmonizing to him even if one is to see the colza of Sally as a metaphor for the treachery of a state, it “ does non decrease the fact the narration is basically violent towards adult females. To deploy adult female to stand for the state, Scorpion Orchid is practising a masculinist inclination to portray adult females as simply symbols of state unity, and non as active participants involved in gaining it ” ( p.124 ) . Similarly, although Siti Sara is portrayed as intelligent and resourceful due to her educational background and station as a lector in one of the top local universities, independent and able to move courageously when make up one’s minding to go forth her hubby Omar and continues her relationship with her Chinese fellow, still at the terminal of the narrative she is merely a incapacitated adult female who is unable to protect herself from the use of the male character like Panglima.

However, Quayum ( 2001 ) who sees Siti Sara as a metaphor of a state argues that her colza by Panglima is particularly important. Her character is used to convey Fernando ‘s position of an ideal state and his fright towards the hereafter of his state if the issue like the abuse of power among the leader is non decently handled. The manner is ever unfastened for the corrupted leaders to mistreat the state in the same manner Panglima abuses Sara.

“ … she is at the Centre of the novel and associated with the countryside and the natural beauty of Malaysia from clip to clip. The writer ‘s worst frights about the hereafter of Malaysia would be realised if corrupt politicians and administrative officials like Panglima were allowed to stay at the helm and regulation of the state. The manner is unfastened for them to mistreat the state in the manner Panglima abuses Sara ( Determining a New National Destiny with Dialogic Vision: Fernando ‘s Green is the Colour, p. 168-173 ) .

Building Fernando ‘s “ imagined community ” in a multicultural, multiracial and multi-ethnic state is non easy. There is no manner that racial harmoniousness can be reinstated by force merely like Panglima ‘s baleful scheme for nation-building. In add-on, Tuan Guru Bahaudin and the Panglima endorse the position that a state consisting many faiths can non go united and merely through a individual religion at the ( potentially violent ) disbursal of others can work as the adhesive for a people that is otherwise racially segregated ( Wilson in Ng, 2009, p.123 ) .


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