QUOTE(Solari @ Oct 2 2010, 11:48 PM)
QUOTE(lucky045 @ Oct 2 2010, 11:27 PM)
The criticism keeps saying that I'll never, ever be able to understand the literature, because I'm western, and therefore I am the oppressor and not the oppressed
Was this criticism aimed at previous generations that would have formed the audience when they were published? Does the ability to be objective count for nothing? I'm confused..
As I understand it, the criticism is aimed at a previous era of theory, which did
try to apply solely western theory to postcolonial texts, and thus ignored any cultural context, assuming that the colonial culture was the only culture that applied in colonised countries... The example I saw was one surrounding a picture of a woman in a veil. Western critics saw it and started talking about the virgin Mary, and innocence and the maternal, when really, and logically, the picture didn't have much to do with any Christian imagery. Or at least, in taking Christian imagery as the sum of the picture's meaning, the western critics were denying the importance of the culture within which the picture was taken. So yeah, it's not as bad as I've made it seem. Current postcolonial study (I think
... This is all new to me) is more about shedding western preconceptions, and yes, being objective, and trying to take the hybrid culture which emerges from colonialism into account.
In short, yes, I should be able to understand it if I try really, really hard. I'm just being sulky about it, because it seems like it will be really difficult. Plus, I'm apparently, quite far behind in my knowledge of politics/historical events etc which shaped the cultures of the countries in which the texts were written... Which will make it all the more difficult to catch up.