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Issue Details: First known date: 2010... 2010 'Decolonizing the Mind' (I) : Colonial Australia
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'All of Peter Carey's novels as well as many of the short stories, I shall argue, engage in a decolonizing programme. If one were to read all of Carey's books in one sitting, one of the mandates of postcolonialism, namely to 'decolonize the mind' (phrase coined by Ngugi wa Thiont'o), would emerge as one of the writer's primary concerns...The stories Carey tells provide evidence of three successive generations of colonial overlords in Australia: the British Empire in colonial times; the United states, which took over cultural and economic overlordship after the British Empire collapsed; and multinational trusts (with moneyed interests from Japan and the United States) in what is technically speaking a postcolonial, but in reality a neo-colonial country. Spanning roughly one and a half centuries of Australian history, Carey's oeuvre thus gives a diachronical overview of the experience of a colonized culture.' (p 151)

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  • Appears in:
    y separately published work icon Rewriting History : Peter Carey's Fictional Biography of Australia Andreas Gaile , Amsterdam : Rodopi , 2010 Z1711490 2010 single work criticism

    'Peter Carey is one of the most richly awarded and critically acclaimed novelists of the present day. Most of his fictions relate to questions of Australian history and identity. Rewriting History argues that taken together Carey's novels make up a fictional biography of Australia. The reading proposed here considers both key events in the life of the subject of Carey's biography (such as the exploration of the interior of the continent, the dispossession of the Aborigines, the convict experience, the process of Australia's coming of age as a postcolonial country) as well as its identity.

    Rewriting History demonstrates how Carey exposes the lies and deceptions that make up the traditional representations of Australian history and supplants them with a new national story - one that because of its fictional status is not bound to the rigidities of traditional historical discourse. At a time of momentous cultural change, when Australia is being transformed from a "New Britannia in another world" to a nation not merely in, but actually of the Asia-Pacific region, Carey's fiction, this book argues, calls for the construction of a postcolonial national identity that acknowledges the wrongs of the past and gives Australians a sense of cultural orientation between their British past and their multicultural present. Source: (Sighted 27/07/2010).

    Amsterdam : Rodopi , 2010
    pg. 151-191
Last amended 30 Nov 2010 12:03:53
151-191 'Decolonizing the Mind' (I) : Colonial Australiasmall AustLit logo
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