Criticism Databank, Postmodernism,
Theories and Text
Postmodernism and Postcolonialism and where they overlap
movement: both discourses dismantle the Western/Colonial centers and challenge
their power, history and prejudices.
Their presentation of
heterogeniety (as a result of colonization, immigration,
multinational capitalism, etc.) .
Hutcheon: They "overlap
in their concerns: formal, thematic and strategic."
the postcolonial intelligensia --under the influence of Western culture
(K.A. Appiah), or global capitalism (Dirlik)
-- the use of mimicry, parody, irony and allegory.
A major difference:
post-colonialisms "assert and affirm a denied or alienated subjectivity"
while postmodernisms challenge "coherent, autonomous subject" (Hutcheon)
vs. the Local/Colonized
Views of the World:
1st World vs. Third World, One World theory, Cultural Imperialism
How do we think about
the local and marginalized? As silent subaltern?
Past the last Post
[the editors see postmodernism] see it. . . as a determined attempt
to retain the position and influence of global centrality. More than simply
capitalism's cultural logic, it now sounds like the essence of capitalism
Post-modernism. . . operates as a Euro-American western hegemony,
whose global appropriation of time-and-place inevitalby proscribes certain
cultures as 'backward' and marginal while coopting to itself certain of
their cultural 'raw' materials. Post-modernism is then projected onto these
margins as normative, as a neo-universalism to which 'marginal' cultures
may aspire, and from which certain of their more forward looking products
might be appropriated and 'authorized'.
Their contention that post-modernism and post-structuralism exercise
intellectual hegemony over the post-colonial world and post-colonial cultural
production is obviously relevant to the problematically post-colonial former
white settler colonies of Australia, Canada and New Zealand.. .
p. x from Past
Discontinuity, polyphony, parodic form, and in particular the problematisation
of representation and the fetishisation/retrieval of "difference," take
on radically different shape and direction within the two discourses.
While post-modernism has increasingly fetishised "difference" and "the
Other," those "othered" by a history of European representation can only
retrieve and reconstitute a post-colonised "self" against thathistory wherein
an awareness of "referential slippage" was inherent in colonial being.
While the disappearnace of "grand narrative" the "crisis of representation"
charcterise the Euro-American post-modernist mood, such expressions of
break-down" and "crisis" instead signal promise and decolonisation
potential wihtin post-colonial discourse. Pastiche and parody are
not simply the new games Europeans play, nor the most recent intellectual
self-indulgence of a Europe habituated to periodic fits of languid despair,
but offer a key to destablisation and deconstruction of a repressive European
archive. Far from endlessly deferring or deying meaning, these
same tropes function as potential decolonizing strategies which invest
(or reinvest) devalued "peripheries" with meaning.
Brydon vs. Hutcheon
Hutcheon. . ."post-modernism is politically ambivalent." . .
.the "post-colonial is 'as implicated in that which it challenges as is
the post-modern" (183). This assertion depends on a leap from the
recognition that the post-colonial is "contaminated" by colonialism to
the conclusion that such "contamination" necessarily implies complicity.
[post-colonial subjectivity--includes diasporic communites, 'ethnic
minority' communites within the overdeveloped world as well as formerly
colonised national cultures.]