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Title: J.M. Coetzee's Contrapuntal Reading of Empire: A Case Study
Authors: Khan, Ishaq
Keywords: Language and Literature
English Language and Literature
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Qurtaba University of Science & Information Technology, Peshawar.
Abstract: The present study aims to examine J.M. Coetzee's response to colonial discourse in his works. The study contains a contrapuntal reading of Empire in J.M. Coetzee's Foe (1986), Waiting for the Barbarians (1980), and Age of Iron (1990). These three works cover different phases of colonialism in the African region: beginnings, middle, and end respectively. Coetzee also shows apartheid in three different phases as Foe shows idealolgical beginnings of apartheid, Waiting for the Barbarians shows physical apartheid and Age of Iron tells us about decline of apartheid in Africa. Said (1993) has used the 'contrapuntal reading' method in his acclaimed work Culture and Imperialism, which is one of the useful methods to unearth the hidden colonial machinations in colonial works. Colonial literature has represented the colonized Africans as cannibals, barbarians, and violent nations. These natives are considered to be 'The White Man's Burden' (Kipling, 1899). On the pretext of the civilizing mission, the white settlers come to the region to occupy their land and grab all its natural resources. Coetzee, being a white South African writer, has exposed the colonial machinations of the white colonizers in his novels demonstrating how white colonizers have concocted stories about the African natives and their culture and made them the victims of their brutal atrocities. To give objective shape to his writings, Coetzee narrates the stories through white narrators who remain complicit in the crimes of the white Empire by somehow presenting the natives as responsible for their own fate. To achieve the objectives of the study, colonization of Africa has been analyzed from three different perspectives: 'truth and the Empire', 'complicity of the protagonists in the crimes of the Empire' and 'barbarity and the Empire'. The research study indicates that the Empire has played the role of a vampire xii in its so-called mission of civilizing the natives. Coetzee shows how the Empire used brutal strategies to suppress the truth to achieve its evil designs of colonizing the Africans. Keywords: Contrapuntal, Colonizer, Colonized, Colonialism, Apartheid, Africa, Empire, Barbarity, Truth, Complicity
Gov't Doc #: 23524
Appears in Collections:PhD Thesis of All Public / Private Sector Universities / DAIs.

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