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Subversion and the Carnivalesque

Images of Resistance in Ngũgĩwa Thiong'o's Wizard of the Crow

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Abstract:

The carnivalesque as a guiding concept provides a useful approach to technique and thematic concerns in the African novel, as some contemporary African novelists have integrated elements of resistance to some form of hegemonic dis/order in their novels. What this essay claims is that Ngũgĩwa Thiong'o's Wizard of the Crow deploys the carnivalesque as an ideology and weapon of resistance, where the popular voice of the marketplace wo/man is employed to subvert instituted authority. The essay interrogates globalization and Structural Adjustment Programmes, arguing that they are re-invented ideologies of colonization for the twenty-first century. To examine elements of resistance in this novel is thus to examine the ways, both salient and silent, in which the postcolony can combat monstrous postcolonial African rĂ©gimes and the largely negative impact of globalization on Africa.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2011

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