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Calixthe BeyalaPerformances of Migration$
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Nicki Hitchcott

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9781846310287

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846312724

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Performing Identities

Performing Identities

Chapter:
(p.112) Chapter Five Performing Identities
Source:
Calixthe Beyala
Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781846310287.003.0006

This chapter examines the issue of identities in Calixthe Beyala's fiction. It analyzes her third novel Seul le diable le savait which frequently draws attention to the way in which identification is based on the ways in which the body presents itself and suggests that most of her novels contain frequent references to the ways in which African women are expected to perform their prescribed gender role. It highlights the importance of the concept of improvisation in understanding of both Beyala's fictional staging of the migrant condition and the way in which she performs her own identity. This chapter also suggests that Beyala's identity is performative, existing only in the moment of its articulation.

Keywords:   identities, Calixthe Beyala, Seul le diable le savait, African women, gender role, improvisation, migrant condition, performative identity

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