Insurgent Imaginations: World Literature and the Periphery

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This book argues that contemporary world literature is defined by peripheral internationalism. Over the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, a range of aesthetic forms beyond the metropolitan West - fiction, memoir, cinema, theater - came to resist cultural nationalism and promote the struggles of subaltern groups. Peripheral internationalism pitted intellectuals and writers not only against the ex-imperial West, but also against their burgeoning national elites. In a sense, these writers marginalized the West and placed the non-Western peripheries in a new center. Through a grounded yet sweeping survey of Bengali, English, and other texts, the book connects India to the Soviet Union, China, Vietnam, Latin America, and the United States. Chapters focus on Rabindranath Tagore, M. N. Roy, Mrinal Sen, Mahasweta Devi, Arundhati Roy, and Aravind Adiga. Unlike the Anglo-American emphasis on a post-national globalization, Insurgent Imaginations argues for humanism and revolutionary internationalism as the determinate bases of world literature.

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Cambridge University Press
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