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Title: A critical exploration of refugees and asylum seekers in contemporary British literature and culture
Author: Woolley, Agnes M. E. C.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2717 5740
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2011
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This thesis explores representations of refugees and asylum seekers in contemporary British literature and culture. Through close readings of literary, filmic and theatrical texts, I consider their varying responses to asylum and the ways in which they interact with, and potentially transform, dominant discourses of forced migration in Britain. Prevailing critical approaches to migration are frequently compromised by their cursory attention to asylum seekers and refugees as specific groups whose ambivalent political status, and solitary journeying, make them distinct from diasporic groups as conventionally perceived. The texts explored in this thesis productively negotiate with critical concepts and theoretical insights in relation to forced migration. In particular, I consider how fictional narratives can contribute to the process of both politically reenergising the position of the refugee, and envisioning new ways of belonging which extend beyond concepts of infrahumanity. Each of the four chapters of this thesis explores two texts and engages with the work of Caryl Phillips, Graham Swift, Pawel Pawlikowski, Alfonso Cuar6n, Kay Adshead, Timberlake Wertenbaker, Chris Cleave and Kate Clanchy. As well as highlighting the significance of asylum as a literary and critical field of enquiry, this thesis identifies a persistent unease regarding both the material and the aesthetic accommodation of forced migrants in Britain and its representations.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available