MOSAIC - Studien und Texte zur amerikanischen Kultur und Geschichte, Band 44

Christine Kutschbach

The Literariness of Life

Undecidability in Bharati Mukherjee's Writing

Bharati Mukherjee’s oeuvre has been discussed predominantly within the context of postcolonialism. The Literariness of Life takes a different perspective: It examines how the U.S. American writer translates general textual openness into concrete works of literature, be it through her creative use of fictional autobiography in Jasmine and Leave It to Me, or by corroding chronology throughout her most recent trilogy (Desirable Daughters, The Tree Bride, Miss New India). 

The Literariness of Life demonstrates how Mukherjee’s stories of immigration renegotiate the mechanisms of human relations from a universal angle – marked and informed by existential ‘undecidability’. This study is guided by the thinking of Jacques Derrida, albeit without offering deconstructive interpretations. Its investigation of Mukherjee’s work steers away from a content-dominated reading practice and encourages the reader to embrace aesthetic questions as themselves political. In this way, The Literariness of Life moves Bharati Mukhjeree’s writing out of the corner of ethnic minority literature.


ISBN 978-3-86821-390-4, 278 S., kt., € 30,00 (2012)


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