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Title: Transgressing boundaries : gender, identity, culture, and 'other' in postcolonial women's narratives in Africa
Author: Oldfield, Elizabeth F.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2340 4550
Awarding Body: University of Derby
Current Institution: University of Derby
Date of Award: 2010
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Fictions written between 1939 and 2005 by indigenous and white (post)colonial women writers who emerge from an African/European cultural experience form the focus of this study. Their voyages into the European diasporic space in Africa within the context of their texts are important since they speak of how African women's literature develops from, and is situated in relation to colonialism. African literature constitutes one facet of the new literatures in English from formerly colonised countries. However, the accomplishments of indigenous writer Grace Ogot are eclipsed by the critical acclaim received by her male counterparts, whilst Elspeth Huxley, Barbara Kimenye and Marjorie Oludhe Macgoye, who emanate from Western culture but adopt an African perspective, are not accommodated by the `expatriate literature' genre. Hence, indigenous and white (post)colonial women's narratives by authors issuing from an African/European cultural experience are brought together to foreground European influence as an apparent phenomenon common to both categorieso f writers, with consequencesfo r the representation of gender, identity, culture and the `Other'. The selected texts are set in Kenya and Uganda, and a main concern is with the extent to which the works are impacted upon by setting and intercultural influences. However, this thesis argues that the `African' woman's creation of textuality is at once the formulation and expression of female individualities and a transgression of boundaries. Furthermore, Kimenye and Macgoye's children's literature illustrates the representation and configuration of a voice and identity for the female `Other' and writer, which enables a re-negotiation of identity and subsequently a crossing of borders. No critical study combines indigenous and white settler women's fiction written from an African perspective and therefore this study extends current scholarly knowledge. Whilst the combination of texts together with the disparate (post)colonial backgrounds is unique, the study of Kimenye and Macgoye's African children's narratives in particular breaks new ground since there is currently no critical comparative study pertaining to indigenous and white postcolonial women's children's literature with an African perspective
Supervisor: Berberich, Christine Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Transgressing boundaries ; Identity ; Other ; Feminism ; African feminism ; Nego-feminism ; Postcolonialism ; Gender ; Culture ; Normative femininity