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Postcolonial PoeticsGenre and Form$
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Patrick Crowley and Jane Hiddleston

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9781846317453

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846317187

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date: 20 November 2017

The Tragedy of Decolonization: Dialectics at a Standstill

The Tragedy of Decolonization: Dialectics at a Standstill

Chapter:
(p.185) The Tragedy of Decolonization: Dialectics at a Standstill
Source:
Postcolonial Poetics
Author(s):

Martin Mégevand

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/UPO9781846317187.012

This chapter examines the tragedies of Algerian, Kateb Yacine, and Martinican, Aimé Césaire, two of the major writers of post-World War II Francophone literature. The analysis focuses on the dialectical dimension of these tragedies and to what appears to be insurmountable in the plays. This approach necessarily leads to the identification of ambiguities in the texts and their context of reception. How far can the content of the tragedies of decolonization be interpreted as steps in a process of emancipation? Despite oracular discourses (Kateb), messianic messages (Césaire, Dadié), or various expressions of an unquiet sense of Utopia (Césaire), the moment of war appears as the impassable horizon of these plays.

Keywords:   Kateb Yacine, Aimé Césaire, tragedies, Francophone literature, war, decolonization, plays

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