Nation and Narration
Edited by Homi K. Bhabha
Routledge – 1990 – 352 pages
Bhabha, in his preface, writes 'Nations, like narratives, lose their origins in the myths of time and only fully encounter their horizons in the mind's eye'.
From this seemingly impossibly metaphorical beginning, this volume confronts the realities of the concept of nationhood as it is lived and the profound ambivalence of language as it is written. From Gillian Beer's reading of Virginia Woolf, Rachel Bowlby's cultural history of Uncle Tom's Cabin and Francis Mulhern's study of Leaviste's 'English ethics'; to Doris Sommer's study of the 'magical realism' of Latin American fiction and Sneja Gunew's analysis of Australian writing, Nation and Narration is a celebration of the fact that English is no longer an English national consciousness, which is not nationalist, but is the only thing that will give us an international dimension.
'Manages to embrace a number of theoretical positions, and individual contributions sometimes achieve a commendable clarity and insight.' - Mr D Hall, Norwich Art & Design Schl
Nation and Narration is provocative in its rewriting of much received wisdom, and will foment debate on an area of literary criticism that has been neglected for far too long.' - Times Literary Supplement