AustLit logo
Issue Details: First known date: 2011... 2011 Projections of Paradise : Ideal Elsewheres in Postcolonial Migrant Literature
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

AbstractHistoryArchive Description

'Paradise is commonly imagined as a place of departure or arrival, beginning and closure, permanent inhabitation of which, however much desired, is illusory. This makes it the dream of the traveller, the explorer, the migrant, hence - a trope recurrent in postcolonial writing, which is so centrally concerned with questions of displacement and belonging. Projections of Paradise documents this concern and demonstrates the indebtedness of writers as diverse as Salman Rushdie, Agha Shahid Ali, Cyril Dabydeen, Bernardine Evaristo, Amitav Ghosh, James Goonewardene, Romesh Gunesekera, Abdulrazak Gurnah, Janette Turner Hospital, Penelope Lively, Fatima Mernissi, Michael Ondaatje, Shyam Selvadurai, M.G. Vassanji, and Rudy Wiebe to strikingly similar myths of fulfilment. In writing, directly or indirectly, about the experience of migration, all project paradises as places of origin or destination, as homes left or not yet found, as objects of nostalgic recollection or hopeful anticipation. Yet in locating such places, quite specifically, in Egypt, Zanzibar, Kashmir, Sri Lanka, the Sundarbans, Canada, the Caribbean, Queensland, Morocco, Tuscany, Russia, the Arctic, the USA, and England, they also subvert received fantasies of paradise as a pleasurable land rich with natural beauty.

Projections of Paradise explores what happens to these fantasies and what remains of them as postcolonial writings call them into question and expose the often hellish realities from which popular dreams of ideal elsewheres are commonly meant to provide an escape.' Source: (Sighted 25/07/2011).


  • Contents indexed selectively.


* Contents derived from the Amsterdam,
Western Europe, Europe,
New York (City), New York (State),
United States of America (USA),
Rodopi , 2011 version. Please note that other versions/publications may contain different contents. See the Publication Details.
Glimpses of Paradise : Hope in Short Stories of Migartion by M. G. Vassanji, Cyril Dabydeen, and Janette Turner Hospital, Helga Ramsey-Kurz , 2011 single work criticism
'The migrant's presence in one place is always an absence from another. To capture this ambivalence, narratives of migration must oscillate between different locations. This paper is interested in the ways in which other-worlds either left or never reached by the migrant are discursively fenced off, as it were, against the remaining part of the tale of travelling to sustain not only a sense of movement beyond the suggested moments of arrival but also the hope by which this movement has been prompted. I will focus on three short stories describing three different stages in the drama of migration: "Leaving" by M. G. Vassanji, "Mammita's Garden Cove" by Cyril Dabydeen, and "After Long Absence" by Janette Turner Hospital.' Helga Ramsey-Kurz.
(p. 237-257)

Publication Details of Only Known VersionEarliest 2 Known Versions of

Last amended 12 Jul 2018 09:28:36
    Powered by Trove