Beyond national literatures: Empire and Amitav Ghosh

Maxey, Ruth (2016) Beyond national literatures: Empire and Amitav Ghosh. In: The Cambridge History of Asian American Literature. Cambridge University Press, pp. 567-582. ISBN 9781107053953

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Scholarship on the writer Amitav Ghosh has addressed issues of nationalism, postcolonial identity, ecocriticism, testimony, subalternity, and historiography. But the idea of Ghosh as an Asian American author with a particular relationship to the United States and its national mythologies, has barely been considered. In this essay, I explore this neglected aspect of Ghosh’s œuvre by looking at the idea of America in his writing and by situating his work within what I term "the Bengali American grain". Reading his work alongside that of other Bengali American writers and arguing that it is more ambitious thematically and more anti-imperialistic, I probe Ghosh’s problematic relationship with the United States, asking how his hemispheric writing continues to extend and even alter the terrain often associated with Asian American literature.

Item Type: Book Section
Additional Information: Ruth Maxey, "Beyond National Literatures: Empire and Amitav Ghosh" in Rajini Srikanth and Min Hyoung Song (eds.), The Cambridge History of Asian American Literature (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2015), 567-582, reprinted with permission of Cambridge University Press. This material has been published in The Cambridge History of Asian American Literature edited by Rajini Srikanth and Min Hyoung Song. This version is free to view and download for personal use only. Not for re-distribution, re-sale or use in derivative works. Copyright Cambridge University Press.
Keywords: Amitav Ghosh; Bengali American; anti-imperialism; Asian American literature
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Arts > School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies > Department of American and Canadian Studies
Depositing User: Maxey, Ruth
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2016 14:52
Last Modified: 04 May 2020 17:28

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