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Postcolonial Francophone Autobiographies: From Africa to the Antillesby Edgard Sankara
Synopses & Reviews
Bringing a comparative perspective to the study of autobiography, Edgard Sankara considers a cross-section of postcolonial francophone writing from Africa and the Caribbean in order to examine and compare for the first time their transnational reception. Sankara not only compares the ways in which a wide selection of autobiographies were received locally (as well as in France) but also juxtaposes reception by the colonized and the colonizer to show how different meanings were assigned to the works after publication.
Sankara's geographical and cultural coverage of Africa and its diaspora is rich, with separate chapters devoted to the autobiographies of Hampate Ba, Valentin Mudimbe, Kesso Barry, Patrick Chamoiseau, Raphael Confiant, and Maryse Conde. The author combines close reading, reception study, and postcolonial theory to present an insightful survey of the literary connections among these autobiographers as well as a useful point of departure for further exploration of the genre itself, of the role of reception studies in postcolonial criticism, and of the stance that postcolonial francophone writers choose to take regarding their communities of origin.
Modern Language Initiative
Book News Annotation:
Using reception theory as an analytical framework, Sankara (French and Francophone studies, U. of Delaware) contributes to the rather unexplored field of comparative Francophone studies, juxtaposing works of literature from two colonized areas as they relate to the same colonizer. He considers autobiographies by Valentin Mudimbé from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Amadou Hampâté Bâ from Mali, Kesso Bary from Guinea, Patrick Chamoisear and Raphaël Confiant from Martinique, and Maryse Condé from Guadeloupe. Annotation Â©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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