Alexandra Negri

Shells on the Shores of Memory

A Diachronic Study of Coloured and Indian South African Narratives




Shells on the Shores of Memory draws together South African Coloured and Indian narratives about different periods in South African history to show how the literary representation of the colonial and the apartheid period diverge and at times converge. In so doing, it addresses these narratives not merely in terms of their “post-coloniality” or “subalternity,” but rather through the prism of the inescapable significance of space and place for issues of South African identity formation and struggles. In addition to its thematic focus on the way in which the violence(s) and vulnerabilities that play out on both a public and an intimate level are contingent upon one’s socio-spatial environment, this study also approaches contradictory emotional responses such as pride, nostalgia, shame, or guilt as corollaries in the socio-spatial paradigm. Marrying insights from psychoanalysis, cultural studies, and poststructuralism, this book offers a fresh comparative approach to two disparate writing traditions and trajectories that have largely been kept separate in academic and public debate, thus enriching our understanding of post-apartheid literature and offering a valuable addition to the field of postcolonial studies.


ISBN 978-3-86821-896-1, kt., 196 S., 4 Abb., € 28,00 (2021)

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