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Tropics of HaitiRace and the Literary History of the Haitian Revolution in the Atlantic World, 1789-1865$
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Marlene L. Daut

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781781381847

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781781381847.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 14 October 2019

Victor Hugo and the Rhetorical Possibilities of “Monstrous Hybridity” in Nineteenth-Century Revolutionary Fiction

Victor Hugo and the Rhetorical Possibilities of “Monstrous Hybridity” in Nineteenth-Century Revolutionary Fiction

Chapter:
(p.152) Chapter Three Victor Hugo and the Rhetorical Possibilities of “Monstrous Hybridity” in Nineteenth-Century Revolutionary Fiction
Source:
Tropics of Haiti
Author(s):

Marlene L. Daut

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.5949/liverpool/9781781381847.003.0004

This chapter argues that anxieties about the righteousness of the Haitian Revolution most readily surface in the figure of the “monstrous hybrid”, who is ambivalently portrayed in fiction as at once capable of the most outrageous crimes and the most daring displays of humanity. The language of “hybridity’ under examination here, symbolized by the simultaneously defamatory and celebratory descriptions of people of color who populate Haitian revolutionary fictions, especially, Victor Hugo’s Bug-Jargal (1826), calls forth the very incongruity, uncertainty, and ambivalence that characterized the events of the Haitian Revolution themselves.

Keywords:   Hugo, Vastey, Race, Monstrous Hybridity, Enlightenment literacy, Translation, Abolition, Slave resistance, Parricide

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