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Chapter 5

ANIA LOOMBA

5.0 INTRODUCTION:

Ania Loomba received her B. A. (Hons), M. A. and M. Phil. degrees from the University of Delhi, India and her Ph. D. from the University of Sussex, U.K. She researches and teaches early modern studies- postcolonial studies, histories of race and colonialism, feminist theory and contemporary Indian literature and society often exploring the intersections between these fields. She has previously taught at the University of Delhi and Jawaharlal Nehru University (India), the University of Tulsa and the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. She was Mellon Fellow at Stanford University. She has held a visiting appointment at the University of Natal, Durban and South Africa. She is also a faculty in Comparative Literature, South Asian Studies, Women‘s Studies and Asian American Studies with which her courses are regularly cross listed. Ania Loomba currently holds the Catherine Bryson Chair, Professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of Gender, Race, Renaissance Drama, Colonialism/Postcolonialism, Shakespeare, Race and Colonialism. She is also the co-editor of Post-colonial Shakespeare and Postcolonial Studies and Beyond. She is series editor (with David Johnson of the Open University, UK) of Postcolonial Literary Studies (Edinburgh University Press). She is currently working on a critical edition of Antony and Cleopatra, and co-editing a collection of essays on South Asian Feminism. She is also working on a monograph on early modern English contact with Asia.

Ania Loomba‘s research focuses on Renaissance literature and history, which she examines through the lenses of gender studies and colonial and

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postcolonial studies. She holds a Ph. D. in English from the University of Sussex and has awarded fellowships by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Center for Advanced Study, University of Illonois. Her first book, Gender, Race, Renaissance Drama, has been widely excerpted in subsequent collections. Her 1998 release, Colonialism/postcolonialism, was recently translated into Italian, Turkish, Korean, and Japanese languages. She has written extensively on early modern drama and culture, Shakespeare, modern performances and adaptations of Shakespeare, the women‘s movement and feminist theory and politics. Most recently she has compiled (with Jonathan Burton) Race in Early Modern England:

A Documentary Companion, which brings together extracts from travel writings, medical texts, statutes, dictionaries, recipes, atlases, emblem books, the Bible, religious commentaries, pamphlets, scientific tracts and philosophical treatises. The collection documents the range and complexity of sixteenth and seventeenth century thinking about racial difference and argues that these materials challenge conventional histories and theories of race. She is currently working on a book which examines real and imagined English exchanges with Turkey, the Moluccas, North Africa and India in the early modern period. These early global conversations are crucial for understanding English drama and culture as well as for rethinking the histories of race and colonialism in the present moment when empire has again become a fashionable term. She examines the key features of the ideologies and history of colonialism, the relationship of colonial discourse to literature, the challenges to colonialism, surveying anti-colonial discourses and recent developments in post-colonial theories and histories and how sexuality is figured in the text of colonialism, and also how contemporary feminist ideas and concepts intersect with those of post-colonialist thought. Her achievement, in some senses, is the most considerable of all, because she works mainly in the most prolifically minded and competitive field within English Studies, namely Shakespeare.

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Loomba was instantaneously offered jobs in the U.S., and after teaching in various campuses, including Stanford, she now has the Catherine Bryson Chair at the English Department of the University of Pennsylvania. She gives lectures on Early Modern English Literature and Culture. She is also familiar with post-colonial literature and history. She involves herself always in researches. She gets lot interest in teaching about the histories and literatures of race, colonialism, gender and nation-formation from the sixteenth centuries to the present. She expresses her studied views on Shakespeare and other early modern dramatists and South Asian writing. Loomba's achievement, in some senses, is the most considerable of all. Her book, entitled Colonialism/Postcolonialism, has been translated into Italian, Turkish, Japanese, Korean and Arabic. Her books on Shakespeare, entitled Gender, Race, Renaissance Drama (1989) and Shakespeare, Race and Colonialism (2002), have raised questions that have now become central within Shakespeare Studies: for example, did skin colour matter to Shakespeare and his contemporaries? Were religious differences important to them? Loomba has shown how plays like "Othello" and "The Tempest" speak about religion and race to audiences outside the West.

The question, did Shakespeare and his contemporaries think at all in terms of "race"? has generated anxiety in Ania Loomba. It gave her strength to study Shakespeare from that point of view. Examining the depiction of cultural, religious, and ethnic difference in Shakespeare's plays, Ania Loomba considers how seventeenth-century ideas differed from the later ideologies of "race" that emerged during colonialism, as well as from older ideas about barbarism, blackness, and religious difference. Accessible yet nuanced analysis of the plays explores how Shakespeare's ideas of race were shaped by beliefs about colour, religion, nationality, class, money and gender. Loomba gives a detailed picture of the concept of race in Shakespeare's day. Loomba's scholarship is rigorous, carefully grounding interpretation of the plays in the ideologies of Shakespeare's

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time, race and colonialism have certainly become important Shakespearean topics in recent years and one could not hope for a more authoritative and accessible discussion of them than that provided by Ania Loomba. In sum up, this book offers a case study of how to write for a wide readership without betraying the complexity of the subject matter. Her works include:

1. Gender, Race, Renaissance Drama

2. Colonialism/ Post-colonialism

3. Shakespeare: Race and Colonialism (ed)

4. Post-colonial Shakespeare (co-ed)

5. Post-colonial Studies and Beyond (co-ed)

She has written extensively on early modern drama and culture, Shakespeare, modern performances and adaptation of Shakespeare, the women‘s movement and feminist theory and politics. Most recently she has compiled, Race in Early Modern England: a documentary companion. Examining the depiction of cultural, religious, and ethnic difference in Shakespeare‘s plays, Ania Loomba considers how seventeenth century ideas differed from the later ideologies of ―race‖ that emerged during colonialism as well as from older ideas about barbarism, blackness, and religious difference. Her analysis of Shakespeare‘s plays explores how his ideas of race were shaped by beliefs about colour, religion, nationality, class, money and gender.

Postcolonial theory deals with the reading and writing of literature written in previously or currently colonized countries, or literature written in colonizing countries which deals with colonized peoples. It focuses particularly on:

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i) The way in which literature by the colonizing culture distorts the experience and realities, and inscribes the inferiority, of the colonized people.

ii) On literature by colonized peoples which attempts to articulate their identity and reclaim their past in the face of that past‘s inevitable otherness.

iii) It can also deal with the way in which literature in colonizing countries appropriates the language, images, scenes, traditions and so forth of colonized countries.

The book, Post-colonial Studies and Beyond is designed to expand the agenda of postcolonial studies, assess the field‘s past and present, and affect its future evolution. The editors ask scholars to consider the intellectual, political and methodological practices that have shaped and which should shape postcolonial modes of thought. The book contains a range of perspectives on issues like, modernity, trans-nationalism, globalization, neo-liberalism, Euro-centricism- and links contributions from history, anthropology, Asian and African studies, environmental studies, literature, politics, and religion to re-evaluate and stretch the field. This accessible volume provides a vital introduction to the historical dimensions and theoretical concepts associated with colonial and postcolonial discourses. Ania Loomba examines: i) the key features of the ideologies and history of colonialism, ii) the relationship of colonial discourse to literature, iii) challenges to colonialism, surveying anti-colonial discourses, and recent developments in post-colonial theories and histories, iv) how sexuality is figured in the texts of colonialism, and also how contemporary feminist ideas and concepts intersect with those of post-colonialist thought. This clear and concise volume is a must for any student needing to get to grips with this crucial and complex area.

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In Colonialism/Postcolonialism, Ania Loomba discusses the different meanings of terms such as colonialism, imperialism and postcolonialism. Here she also discusses the controversies around these concepts. She further introduces the readers to aspects of post-structuralist, Marxist, feminist and post- modern thought which have become important or controversial in relation to postcolonial studies. Ania Loomba also considers the complexities of colonial and postcolonial subjects and identities. She asks many questions with a view to opening up the larger debate on the relationship between material and economic processes and human subjectivities. She has examined the processes of decolonization and the problems of recovering the viewpoint of colonized subjects from a ‗postcolonial‘ perspective. Various theories of resistance are observed for considering the crucial debates they engender about authenticity and hybridity, the nation, ethnicity and colonial identities. Theories of nationalism and pan- nationalism and how they are fractured by gender, class and ideological divides are considered. Finally she considers the place of postcolonial studies in the context of globalization. This book, for some years, has been accepted as the essential introduction to vibrant and politically charged area of literary and cultural study. With new coverage of emerging debates around globalization, this book will continue to serve as the ideal guide for advanced students and teachers in regard with colonial discourse theory, postcolonial studies or postcolonial theory.

Colonialism/Postcolonialism is a remarkably comprehensive yet accessible guide to the historical and theoretical dimensions of colonial and postcolonial discourses. It is the essential introduction to the vibrant, crucially important areas of literary and cultural study usually known as postcolonial theory, postcolonial studies and colonial discourse theory. Building on her widely acclaimed first edition, Ania Loomba examines: the key features of the ideologies and history of colonialism, the relationship of colonial discourse to literature, challenges to colonialism, including anti-colonial discourses, recent developments

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in postcolonial theories and histories, issues of sexuality and colonialism, and the intersection of feminist and postcolonial thought, debates about globalization and postcolonialism, and fully updated for the second edition, with an entirely new discussion of globalization. Colonialism/Postcolonialism should be on the shelf of every student of literature, culture or history.

In her book, Shakespeare, Race, and Colonialism, Ania Loomba talks about the different aspects of race, gender, and religion that work together in the play Othello. Contrasting seventeenth-century views with modern, post- colonial views, this book discusses crucial issues for our understanding and appreciation of the plays. Shakespeare's plays contain so many fascinating and central characters whose 'differences' are crucial to their character and their fate - from Shylock and his daughter Jessica to Othello and Caliban. Ania Loomba presents students and teachers with a lucid examination of Shakespeare's handling of colour, religion, and 'race', and how this differs from his predecessors, contemporaries, and, importantly, our own ways of thinking.

Unique in its focus, Post-Colonial Shakespeares examines how our assumptions about key ideas such as 'colonization', 'race', and 'nation' derive from the early modern English culture and looks at how such terms are themselves embedded in "colonial" forms of knowledge. Featuring original work by some of the leading critics within the field, this impressive volume explores the multiple ways of reading Shakespeare in our postcolonial context. The contributors:

Andreas Bertoldi, Jerry Brotton, Jonathan Burton, Jonathan Dollimore, Terence Hawkes, Margo Hendricks, David Johnson, Michael Neill, Avraham Oz, Nicholas Visser, made this volume rich and readable one.

Her book, Post-colonial Studies and Beyond (an interdisciplinary book) expands the agenda of postcolonial studies, assesses the field's past and maps its possible futures. It considers the intellectual, political and methodological

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practices that have shaped and which should shape postcolonial modes of thought. The effort is to reinvent the field. Such reinvention has been happening but, having already influenced perspectives and methods across disciplines, postcolonial studies are becoming increasingly institutionalized. To remain useful, it needs new directions and emphases.

The essays included here, address questions about the field's definition, relevance and relationship to issues of modernity, translationalism, and globalization. Can postcolonial studies produce insights that will illuminate what is marginalized or invisible within the discourses of globalization and neo- imperialism? Can it draw on its tradition of anti-colonial thought and socio- cultural analysis to continue suggesting socio-economically informed models of political mobilization and innovative critical language? Can it minimize Euro- centricism? The book contains a broad range of perspectives on these issues.

5.1 COLONIALISM/POSTCOLONIALISM:

Ania Loomba argues that colonialism reshapes often violently, physical territories, social terrains as well as human identities. The terms:

colonialism, Imperialism, are defined in Oxford English Dictionary (OED) as:

a settlement in a new country…. A body of people who settle in a new locality, forming a community subject to or connected with their parent state; the community so formed , consisting of the original settlers and their descendants and successors, as long as the connection with the parent state is kept up. (2005:7)

Here she points out that the above definition neglects the people other than the colonizers that indicate conquest and domination. She adds ahead that it locks the

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original inhabitants and this generates the complex and traumatic relationships in human history. She further points out that the process of forming a new community in the new land means un-forming or re-forming the original communities. She concludes this definition stating that the colonialism means the conquest and control of other people‘s land and goods. It is not only the expansion of various European powers in non-European countries/areas but a recurrent and widespread feature of human history.

Ania Loomba points out the changed picture of modern European colonialism that enriched the different kinds of colonial practices which altered the whole globe. The modern colonialism developed in addition with extracting tribute, goods and wealth from conquered countries, a new and complex relationship and engendered a flow of human and natural resources between colonized and colonial countries to grow profit for them. Loomba adds ahead that European colonialism has applied a variety of techniques and patterns of domination as well as it produced the economic imbalance, necessarily for the growth of European capitalism and industry. She differentiates the concept imperialism from colonialism in following words:

we can distinguish between colonization as the takeover of territory, appropriation of material resources, exploitation of labour and interference with political and cultural structures of another territory or nation, and imperialism as a global system. (2005:11)

Here she states that colonialism seems to limit certain locality that is surpassed in imperialism. Thereafter, Loomba focuses the term post-colonialism that applies two senses: temporal, as in coming after, and, ideological, as in supplanting. The post-colonialism doesn‘t mark the demise of colonialism.

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Ania Loomba states that the term post-colonialism appears to be riddled with contradictions and qualifications. She adds ahead that it also allows us to incorporate the history of anti-colonial resistance with contemporary resistances to imperialism and to dominant Western cultures. According to Loomba, post-colonialism emphasizes concepts like, hybridity, fragmentation and diversity. It is a kind of reaction to colonialism which does not allow for differences between distinct kinds of colonial situations, or the workings of class, gender, location, race, caste or ideology among people whose lives have been restructured by colonial rule. She states further that ‗post-colonial‘ refers to specific groups of (oppressed or dissenting) people or individuals (within them) rather than to a location or a social order and postcolonial theory has been accused of, as it shifts the focus from locations and institutions to individuals and their subjectivities, post-coloniality, like patriarchy, is articulated alongside other economic, social, cultural and historical factors, and therefore, in practice, it works quite differently in various parts of the world.

Ania Loomba argues that the tensions about power and subjectivity have become central to the study of colonialism. The concept of colonial discourse is introduced to re-order the study of colonialism. Said has introduced Orientalism as to inaugurate a new kind of study of colonialism. She argues about colonial discourse which may help the readers to understand social happenings and their relationship with the discourse. According to her, discourse analysis makes it possible to trace connections between the visible and the hidden, the dominant and the marginalized, ideas and institutions. It also allows us to see how power works through language, literature, culture and the institutions which regulate our daily lives. Loomba states that colonial discourse studies today are not restricted to delineating the workings of power- they have tried to locate and theorize oppositions, resistances and revolts on the part of the colonized. Colonial discourse studies present a distorted picture of colonial rule in which central

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effects are inflated at the expense of economic and political institutions. She adds further that colonial discourse studies erase any distinction between the material and ideological, because they simply concentrate on the latter.

Loomba points out that the concept of ‗discourse‘ is used to mean to uncover the interrelation between the ideological and material rather than to collapse them into each other. The representation of colonial discourse is observed in literary studies, art, history, films, media and cultural studies too. Loomba strongly argues that there is no consensus or homogeneity within colonial discourse analysis which is the site of much debate and controversy precisely because it has drawn from a wide range of intellectual and political histories and affiliations. According to Loomba, colonialism reshaped existing structures of human knowledge as no branch of learning was left untouched by the colonial experience. She further observes that colonialism expanded the contact between Europeans and non-Europeans, generating the flood of images and ideas on an unprecedented scale. She further points out that literary texts do not simply reflect dominant ideologies, but encode the tensions, complexities and nuances within colonial cultures. The literary discourse is an important means of appropriating, inverting or challenging dominant means of representation and colonial ideologies. She adds ahead that the literature (discourse) can be important in devaluating and controlling colonial subjects. The literary texts or discourses have become more widely recognized as materials that are essential for historical study of that particular country or location. Loomba argues that the meanings that are given to texts are of dominant critical views that were later on included within educational systems.

Loomba observes that many recent books on ‗post-colonial literature‘ consider literatures written in English, or widely available in translation, or those that have made the best-seller lists in Europe and United States. So she

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expects that non-Westerns need to be recovered, celebrated, re-circulated, reinterpreted not just in order to revise our view of European culture but as part of the process of decolonization. She further argues that colonialism, according to these ways of reading, should be analyzed as if it were a text, composed of representational as well as material practices available to us via range of discourses such as scientific, economic, literary and historical writings, official papers, art and music, cultural traditions, popular narratives, and even rumours.

Loomba argues that colonialism was the means through which capitalism achieved its global expansion. Racism simply facilitated this process, and was the conduit through which the labour of colonized people was appropriated. At the same time she states that economic explanations are insufficient for understanding the racial features of colonized societies. The former approach privileges class, and the latter race in understanding colonial societies. Colonialism is the result of certain psychic differences between races (which lead some people to dependency or the need to be ruled). She expects that anti-colonial struggles had to create new and powerful identities for colonized peoples and to challenge colonialism not only at a political or intellectual level, but also on an emotional plane. She believes that the idea of the nation was the powerful vehicle for harnessing anti-colonial energies at all these levels. She speaks ahead that to isolate colonialism from its later evolution is to deflect attention from the narrative of nationalism, communalism and religious fundamentalism which are the crucibles within which gender, class, caste or even neo-colonialism function today.

Ania Loomba views that post-colonial theory and criticism are inadequate to the task of either understanding or changing our world because they are the children of post-modernism. Here she refers Arif Dirlik who talks on ‗post- colonialism‘ as:

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Postcolonialism ‗a child of post-modernism‘ which is born not out of new perspectives on history and culture but because of ‗the increased visibility of academic intellectuals of the third world origin as pacesetters in cultural criticism. (1994:330)

Here Loomba argues that post-modernists and post-colonialists celebrate and mystify the workings of global capitalism. She adds ahead that the narratives of women, colonized people, and non-Europeans revise our understanding of colonialism, capitalism and modernity. These global narratives do not disappear but can now be read differently. Finally she expects that critics across many language communities should have a dialogue about the genuine difficulties generated by the interdisciplinary, cross-cultural nature of colonialism/postcolonialism, because in the wake of recent developments, it is clear that the issues raised by the study of colonialism remain urgent and vital today.

5.2 FEMINISM:

Ania Loomba states that if the nation is an imagined community, that imagining is profoundly gendered. The nation-state or its guiding principles are often imagined (a colossal statue of the Motherland at Stalingrad) itself is imagined as a woman. Sometimes the spirit of dilemma as an entire culture is sought to be expressed via a female figure (Malintzin story). She argues further that as national emblems, women are usually cast as mothers or wives, and are called upon to literally and figuratively reproduce the nation. Loomba points out that, anti-colonial or nationalist movements have used the image of the nation-as- mother to create their own lineage, and also to limit and control the activity of women within the imagined community. They have also literally exhorted women

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to produce sons who may live and die for the nation. She believes that the identification of women as national mothers stems from a wider association of nation with the family. The nation is cast as a home, its leaders and icons assume parental roles (father and mother) and fellow-citizens are brothers and sisters. The image of nation as mother marshals and undercuts female power.

Loomba argues the logic behind women education in following

words:

As mothers to the nation, real women are granted limited agency. The arguments for women‘s education in metropolitan as well as colonial contexts rely on the logic that educated women will make better wives and mothers. At the same time, educated women have to be taught not to overstep their bounds and usurp authority from men. (2005:182)

The idea, woman is constructed in opposition to the specter of the Memsahib who neglects her home and husband. The image fuses together older brahminical notions of female self-sacrifice and devotion with the Victorian ideal of the enlightened mother, devoted exclusively to the domestic sphere.

Ania Loomba argues further that many critics have pointed the reform of women‘s position as a major concern within nationalist discourses. She adds ahead that even though the female power, energy and sexuality haunt nationalist discourses, women themselves disappear from these discourses about them. We learn little about how they felt or responded from colonial or nationalist records. Recently, there is little attempt to locate them as subjects within the colonial struggle. She points out that Gayatri Chakravorty‘s essay, ‗Can the Subaltern Speak?‘ helped to express strongly about widow immolation within postcolonial theory. Women are not just a symbolic space but real targets of

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colonialist and nationalist discourses. Their subjection and the appropriation of their work are crucial to the workings of the colony or the nation.

Ania Loomba expresses very frankly her views on the topic of feminism. She views that Marxist thought has failed to theorize the specificity of gender oppression. According to her, the question of culture and ideologies was vital that comes in the study of feminist thought. She points out that the oppression of the women has been seen as a matter of culture that takes place within the family. She further comments that the exploitation of their labour power was obscured by a gender-blind economic analysis that failed to integrate class with other forms of social division. She expresses ahead that in Marxism also in a wider intellectual sphere, women‘s oppression was seriously under-theorized. Loomba illustrates the thinking of a common woman as:

a battered wife may believe that single women are more vulnerable to danger and violence, and more lonely and unhappy than married women, and this belief impels her not to rebel against her situation, and even allows her to expound on the necessity for women to be married. (2005:27)

Here Loomba points out that the life of a woman is connected to men and it gets value in that link only. Women‘s own voices could find no representation during the colonial debates.

Loomba opines that feminist movement needed to challenge dominant ideas of history, culture and representation. The feminist struggle has emphasized culture as a site of conflict between the oppression and the oppressed. She points out that from the beginning of the colonial period till its end (and beyond), female bodies symbolize the conquered land. This metaphoric use of female body varies in accordance with the exigencies and histories of particular colonial situations. She states ahead that female volition; desire and agency are

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literary pushed to the margins of the civilized world. But not all margins are equally removed from the centre: Skin colour and female behaviour come together in establishing a cultural hierarchy with white Europe at the apex and black Africa at the bottom. Colonial sexual encounters, both heterosexual and homosexual, often exploited inequities of class, gender, age, race and power. She goes a step ahead and states that the fear of cultural and racial pollution prompts the most hysterical dogmas about racial difference and sexual behaviours because it suggests the instability of ‗race‘ as a category. So sexuality is a means for the maintenance or erosion of racial difference. In patriarchal society, women are split subjects who watch themselves being watched by men. Loomba comments some women and non-Europeans who are responsible for their own subordination in following words:

The analogy between the subordination of women and colonial subjects, sometimes promoted by women and non-Europeans themselves, runs the risk of erasing the specificity of colonial and patriarchal ideologies, besides tending to homogenize both women and non-Europeans. (2005:138)

Here Loomba points out that Africans and women are commonly regarded as more community-minded in their outlook than Europeans and men. She observes the fact that black and colonized women suffer from both from racial and gendered forms of oppression simultaneously.

Ania Loomba expects that black post-colonial feminists and women activists must lead to challenge this complex positioning of women. They could try to remove the colour prejudices within white feminism and the gender- blindness of anti-racist or anti-colonial movements. Loomba further views that if colonial power is repeatedly expressed as a white man‘s possession of black women and men, colonial fears centre around the rape of white women by black men. She expects ahead that women of colour have also had to challenge the

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colour-blindness of Euro-American feminist theory and movements. As like many scholars and activists, Loomba too critiqued the Western feminist project for its neglect of racial and colonialist politics. She also points out that non-white feminists have written alternative histories of women‘s oppression, and also offered alternative blueprint for action. She adds ahead that within colonized countries, where women‘s activism has been proliferating in this century, some activists have rejected the term ‗feminist‘ as too tainted by its white antecedents. So she states that black and colonized women are doubly oppressed- ‗double colonization‘ as of race and gender categories. Loomba further records that class is extremely important in analyzing how race and gender have historically shaped one another.

Ania Loomba strongly attacks the colonialism that eroded many matrilineal or woman-friendly cultures and practices, or intensified women‘s subordination in colonized lands. She attacks the advent of the slave trade, the decline of village agriculture and labour migration to urban centres, Christianity altering family structures and sexual patterns and colonial law restructuring considering only elite‘s customs for becoming kinds of hurdles in the wellbeing of women community in general and colonized women in particular. Loomba points out further that colonialism became the cause of women‘s oppression as:

Colonialism intensified patriarchal oppression, often because native men, increasingly disenfranchised and excluded from the public sphere, became more tyrannical at home. They seized upon the home and the woman as emblems of their culture and nationality. The outside world could be Westernized but all was not lost if the domestic space retained its cultural purity. (2005:142)

Here Loomba views that colonialism restricted the colonized men into public sphere causing domestic tyranny. Colonial women were asked to bind with

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domestic space for cultural purity. She also points out that the native resistance of colonized men to defend their ‗self-esteem‘ is deeply oppressive of women. The colonialism has introduced the new forms of patriarchal domination in colonized lands giving subordination to women. The feminist criticism has emphasized the patriarchal structures within which the memsahib (lady) was trapped at home and abroad and has highlighted the differences between female and male in various parts of the colonial world. She also observes that the European colonialism often justified its ‗civilizing mission‘ by claiming that it was rescuing native women from oppressive patriarchal domination.

Ania

Loomba

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representing their mute sisters as:

the

white

women‘s

hidden

intensions

in

While white women played important roles in the abolition of slavery and in initiating colonial reform, even those progressive roles were often premised on the idea of a racial hierarchy. Within colonial spaces, white women participated with varying degrees of alienation and enthusiasm in imperial projects; as teachers, missionaries, nurses, and the help-mates of colonial men, their roles varied both structurally and ideologically.

(2005:144)

Here Loomba comments the selfish attitude of the white women who initiated colonial reform for colonized women.

Ania Loomba concludes that the race, gender and sexuality do not just provide metaphors and images for each other, but develop together in the colonial arena. She records the roles and positions of colonized women in following words:

Colonial women were not simply objectified in colonial discourses- their labour fed the colonial machine. If female slaves were the backbone of

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plantation economies, today, the third world women and women of the colour provide the cheapest labour for sweetshops, the sex-trade, large- multinationals as well as smaller industries, and are the guinea pigs for exploitative and dangerous experiments in health and fertility. They remain the poorest of the poor in the post-colonial world. Such exploitation is both a colonial legacy and outcome of specific ‗postcolonial‘ developments.

(2005:145)

Here Loomba tries to present the critical and pathetic situation of colonized women giving many illustrations observed by various scholars and activists in the field of feminism.

The relationship of women to national culture can obscure other vital aspects of their social existence. The gendered spiritual or inner core central to the construction of anti-colonial national identities is seen to be shaped by the shared national past or a cultural essence which in turn becomes synonymous with a religious or racial identity. She argues that women were regarded as crucial markers of cultural difference in the colonies. She highlights women‘s lower position in society as:

In India, Algeria, South Africa and countless other colonized countries, the colonizers regarded women‘s position within the family and within religious practices as indicative of degenerate native cultures. Reform of women‘s position thus became central to colonial rule. (2005:161)

Loomba states here that nationalists objected the colonial intrusion in women‘s matter and they have introduced some reforms of their own. She adds ahead that in India, ‗a new woman‘ and ‗a new family structure‘ different than tradition or Western version were projected as nationalist ideals.

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Loomba points out that women were politically active, worked and lived outside of purely domestic spaces, sometimes in positions of leadership, they opened up new conceptual spaces for women. She adds ahead that even when they moved into public spaces in the name of motherhood and family, they challenged certain notions of motherhood and of femininity. Anti-colonial nationalisms opened up spaces for women largely by legitimizing their public activity. Women‘s participation in politics is easily accepted in postcolonial countries than in ‗metropolitan‘, precisely because of nationalist legacy. Many postcolonial regimes have been outrightly repressive of women‘s rights, using religion as basis on which to enforce their subordination. She argues ahead that women are objects as well as subjects of fundamentalist discourses and also targets as well as speakers of its most virulent rhetoric. She expects that women had to overcome male opposition to their equal participation in the struggles for self-determination, democracy and anti-imperialism. She believes that these movements re-shaped women‘s understanding of themselves. She concludes that the global imbalances profoundly structure feminist agendas in the postcolonial world. She also feels happy as women have been increasing participation in the postcolonial politics, ranging from the more established forms of political action to the new social movements.

5.3 ON IDEOLOGY:

Ania Loomba states her frank opinions about the term, Ideology. According to her, Ideology does not refer to political ideas alone, as it also includes our ‗mental frameworks‘, our beliefs, concepts, and ways of expressing our relationship to the world. She states ahead that it is the most complex and elusive term in social thought. She gives the reference of Marx and Engels (The German Ideology 1846) who had suggested that ideology is basically a distorted or

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a false consciousness of the world which disguises people‘s real relationship to their world. Here Loomba opines that ideologies that are circulated and gained currency in any society reflect and reproduce the interests of the dominant social classes. The ideology has the function of obscuring from the working classes the ‗real‘ state of their own lives and oppression.

Loomba, like Marx and Engels, believes that all our ideas, including self conceptions, spring from the world in which we live. She also points out that the world under capitalism, gives rise to a series of illusions as money has the power to distort or even invert reality. She adds ahead that in capitalism, money and commodities increasingly displace, stand in for, and are mistaken for human values. She strongly points out that ideology is not a failure to perceive reality, for reality (capitalism) itself is ideological, disguising its essential features in a realm of false appearances. She gives support to her views, referring Marx and Lukacs. According to Marx, Ideology is in contrast to science and it has the capacity to cut through illusions. Lukacs states that Ideology is not always false consciousness; but its validity or falsity depends upon the ‗class situation‘ of the collective subject whose view it represents. Here Loomba concludes that Ideologies are not always false but they are still always the product of economic and social life.

Loomba further views that there is no correspondence between ideologies and classes. As classes are of heterogeneous groups, ideologies are not similar among all as it lacks uniformity. So ideologies are also the fields of ‗intersecting accents‘ coming several different directions. She gives the reference of Antonio Gramsci who states that there are various kinds of ideologies. He views that ideology in general works to maintain social cohesion and express the protest of those who are exploited (1971). Loomba expresses that social realities, including social conflicts, are grasped by human beings via their ideologies and so ideologies are also the site of social struggle. According to Loomba, ideology is

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crucial in creating consent, it is the medium through which certain ideas are transmitted and held to be true. Gramsci views that ideologies are more than just reflections of material reality; they are conceptions of life that are manifest in all aspects of individual and collective existence (1971). Ania Loomba gives reference of Louis Althusser who views that ideologies may express the interests of social groups, but they work through and upon individual people, or subjects (1971). The subjectivity or personhood itself formed in and through ideology. Althusser argued that ideology has a relevant autonomy from the material base. He further says that educational systems are important means for the dissemination of dominant ideologies. Colonialism had not one but several ideologies, and these ideologies were manifest in hundreds of different institutional and cultural practices. She points out the vulnerable situation during the forcibly converting to Christianity in following words:

What was once impossible- washing the Ethiope white- is now rendered feasible by Christianity. But in the process, skin colour is unyoked from moral qualities. The black queen must now be recognized as good. Colonial plunder of goods is justified by the gift of Christianity. But if blackness can be washed white that means whiteness is also vulnerable to pollution.

(2005:99)

Here Loomba points out that Christianity became the source of getting status or position in the society. So many non-Christians were attracted towards conversion to Christianity. Ania Loomba argues that ideologies of racial difference were intensified by their incorporation into the discourse of science, which intensified the supposed connection between the biological features of each group and its psychological and social attributes. The ideologies of race and the social structures created by them facilitate capitalist production.

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5.4 COLONIAL/ POSTCOLONIAL IDENTITIES:

Ania Loomba expresses her scholarly and experienced views on colonial/postcolonial identities. She points out that the ‗othering‘ vast numbers of people by European colonist thought, and their construction as backward and inferior, in which binary and implacable discursive opposition between races is produced. She states that these oppositions are crucial not only for creating images of non-Europeans, but also for constructing a European self. She adds that in reality, any simple binary opposition between ‗colonizers‘ and ‗colonized‘ or between races is undercut by the fact that there are enormous cultural and racial differences within each of these categories as well as cross-overs between them. She refers Homi K. Bhabha who has emphasized the failure of colonial regimes to produce stable and fixed identities, and suggested that ‗hybridity‘ of identities and the ‗ambivalence‘ of colonial discourse more adequately describe the dynamics of the colonial encounter (1983).

Loomba states that religious difference became an index of and metaphor for racial, cultural and ethnic differences. She argues ahead that the racial stereotyping is not the product of modern colonialism alone, as in history of Greek and Roman created European images of ‗barbarians‘ and ‗outsiders‘. She objects the Bible that held all human beings were brothers descended from the same parents at one hand and ‗savages‘ and ‗monsters‘ who had incurred the God‘s wrath on the other. She argues further that with European colonial expansion, and nation building, these earlier ideas were intensified, expanded and reworked. She adds ahead that despite the enormous differences between the colonial enterprises of various European nations, they seem to generate fairly similar stereotypes of ‗outsiders‘- both those outsiders who roamed far away on the edges of the world, and those who (Irish) lurked uncomfortably nearer home. The laziness, aggression, violence, greed, sexual promiscuity, beastiality,

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primitivism, innocence and irrationality are attributed by the English, French, Dutch, Spanish and Portuguese colonists to Turks, Africans, Native Americans, Jews, Indians, the Irish, and others. It is also worth noting that some of these descriptions were used for working-class populations or women within Europe.

Ania Loomba points out that the differences were noted within each group as well. Columbus distinguished between ‗cannibals‘ and ‗indios‘- the former were represented as violent and brutish, the latter as gentle and civil. She states ahead that in some cases, colour was the most important signifier of cultural and racial difference (Africans) and in other cases it was less remarked upon (Irish). Loomba observes that the construction of racial differences had to do with the nature of the societies which Europeans visited, the class of people who were being observed, as well as whether trade or settlement was the objective of the visitors. She argues that colonizer differed in their modes of interacting with the local population, thus producing variable racial discourses and identities. She adds ahead that the colour and race consciousness marked even the policy of cohabitation, and, racial distinctions continued to inform the subsequent ‗mixed‘ social order. Sometimes fine-tunning is evident where the hybrid population resulted to encode a complex hierarchy of colour, class and gender. This type of situation occurred in Portugal, Spanish or Latin Americans. The British colonialism, on the other hand, did not allow for easy social or sexual contact with local people. In short, heterogeneity, variety and diversity are sometimes understood as lack of purpose or ideology.

Loomba points out that when people were moved to new locations their racial attributes did not change. Theories of race, and racial classifications were often attempts to deal with the real or imagined ‗hybridization‘ that was a feature of colonial contact everywhere. She states ahead that the race has functioned as one of the most powerful and yet the most fragile markers of human identity. Today skin colour has become the privileged marker of races. Loomba

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points out the significance of colour and other attributes in identifying racial identity as:

While colour is taken to be prime signifier of racial identity, the latter is actually shaped by perceptions of religious, ethnic, linguistic, national, sexual and class differences. ‗Race‘ as a concept receives its meanings contextually, and in relation to other social groupings and hierarchies, such as gender and class. (2005:105)

Here as like other critics Loomba suggests that racial hierarchies are the ‗magic formula‘ which allow Capitalism to expand and find all the labour power it needs, and yet pay even lower wages, and allow even fewer freedoms than are given to the white working classes.

Loomba argues that for the ‗Negro‘ racial identity overrides every other aspect of existence. The black person attempts to cope by adopting white masks that will somehow make the fact of his blackness vanish. Loomba calls this a precarious process. Thus black skin/white masks reflect the miserable schizophrenia of the colonized‘s identity. She further points out that every child reflects the oedipal complex approach of the family. She adds ahead that colonialism is described as an oedipal scene of forbidden desire. Here she refers the opinion of Bhabha who says that colonial identities are always oscillating, never perfectly achieved. Loomba points out that the split between ‗black skin‘ and ‗white masks‘ is differentially experienced in various colonial and postcolonial societies. Loomba argues that ‗experience‘ and ‗constructedness‘ need not be thought of as polar opposites. The process of ‗acting‘ is not outside the process by which identities are formed, but equally ‗action‘ and ‗consciousness‘ are not attributes of some static inner force but of our changing selves.

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5.5 HYBRIDITY:

Ania Loomba expresses her views and opinions in regard with the term ‗hybridity‘ in her scholarly writing. She records that postcolonial studies have been preoccupied with the issues of hybridity- with the in-betweenness, diasporas, mobility and cross-overs of ideas and identities generated by colonialism. She even observes the widely divergent ways of thinking about these issues. She gives reference of Robert Young‘s idea about the term hybrid:

hybrid is technically a cross between two different species and that therefore the term ‗hybridization‘ evokes both the botanical notion of inter- species grafting and the ‗vocabulary of the Victorian extreme right‘ which regarded different races as different species. (1995:10)

Here Loomba points out the colonial deliberate policy with striking contradictions as colonialism needs both to ‗civilize‘ its ‗others‘ and to fix them into perpetual ‗otherness‘.

Ania Loomba refers Macaulay‘s idea about to create Europeanized natives: A class of persons, Indian in blood and colour, but English in taste, in opinion, in morals and in intellect (1972). Here she states that colonial hybridity is a strategy premised on cultural purity, and aimed at stabilizing the status quo. She adds ahead that the anti-colonial movements and individuals often drew upon Western ideas and vocabularies to challenge colonial rule and hybridized what they borrowed by juxtaposing it with indigenous ideas, reading it through their own interpretative lens; even using it to assert cultural alterity or insist on an unbridgeable difference between colonizer and colonized seems to conflict or clash with their aims and objectives. She points out that Caribbean and Latin American activists started hybridity as an anti-colonial strategy. Ania Loomba refers Cuban writers R. S. Retamar, Paul Gilroy regarding the term hybridity: The

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intellectual and political cross-fertilization that resulted from the black diasporas or the movements of black people not only as commodities but engaged in various struggles towards emancipation, autonomy and citizenship. The hybridity provides

a means to re-examine the problems of nationality, location, identity and historical

memory. Loomba expects new conceptual tools to analyze these newly generated complex identities. Here the term ‗ethnicity‘ has been used to indicate biologically and culturally stable identities which is controversial to hybridity. She argues that

Bhabha‘s concept of hybridity is both influential and controversial in post-colonial studies. Bhabha suggests that liminality and hybridity are necessary attributes of the colonial condition. Referring to Fanon and Terry Collits, Loomba states that the image of ‗black skin/white masks‘ suggests not a hybridity but a violated authenticity. Loomba further points out that hybridity seem to be a characteristic of Bhabha‘s inner life, but not of his positioning.

Ania Loomba opines that the ‗hybridity‘ of both a colonizer and colonized can be understood only by tracing the vicissitudes of colonial discourse, or the mutations in European culture. And so we cannot appreciate the specific nature of diverse hybridities if we do not attend to the nuances of each of the cultures that come together or clash during the colonial encounter. Here she gives

a useful reference of Arif Dirlik who suggests that conditions of in-betweenness

and hybridity cannot be understood without reference to the ideological and institutional structures in which they are housed (1994:342). Ania loomba believes that the migration of people is perhaps the definitive (experience) characteristic of the twentieth century. She adds ahead that the experience of diaspora is also marked by class and gender divides. And so it is important to recall that large numbers of people in the Third World have not physically moved, and have to speak from where they are, is also often an equally ideologically or politically and

emotionally fractured space.

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Ania loomba refers Benita Parry who suggests that current theories of ‗hybridity‘ work to downplay the bitter tension and the clash between the colonizers and the colonized and therefore misrepresent the dynamics of anti- colonial struggle (1987:27-58). She argues further that Nationalist Struggles and Pan-Nationalist Movements were fuelled by the alienation and the anger of the colonized and so cannot be understood within the parameters of current theories of hybridity. Loomba agrees that the colonialist categories of knowledge had the power to make us see and experience ourselves as ‗other‘. She adds ahead that this kind of knowledge is internal, not external, and it is crucial to the process of colonial subject formation. She states further that it cannot simply be erased or shrugged off as a kind of false consciousness. She takes the reference of Hall who refuses to choose between ‗difference‘ and ‗hybridity‘ and tries to keep alive a sense of difference which is not pure ‗otherness‘. Finally, Loomba concludes with her thought:

The task, then, is not simply to pit the themes of migrancy, exile and hybridity against rootedness, nation and authenticity, but to locate and evaluate their ideological, political and emotional valences, as well as their intersections in the multiple histories of colonialism and postcoloniality.

(2005:153)

Here Loomba focuses the need of clear understanding of the different but some more equal in meaning terms in the colonial and postcolonial background. She tries to explain the term hybridity referring many critics and scholars. Her convincing style is noteworthy that asks us to go through different illustrations that are relevant to the term- ‗hybridity‘.

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5.6 NATIONALISM/PAN-NATIONALISM:

Ania Loomba talks about Nationalism and Pan-nationalism. According to her, it is difficult to generalize about nationalism because none of the factors, responsible for forging national consciousness- language, territory, a shared past, religion, race, customs- are applicable in every instance. She further expects that though the nationalism in each case is unique, we need to make linkages between different histories of the nation, and look for general patterns. She refers Anderson who defines the nation as an ‗imagined community‘, born with the demise of feudalism and the rise of capitalism (1983). Loomba states that newspapers, novels and other new forms of communication were the channels for creating a shared culture, interests and vocabularies within the nation. She believes Anderson‘s point, that language is much more fundamental in developing national consciousness.

Loomba argues that Nationalism is a ‗derivative discourse‘, a calibanistic model of revolt which is dependent upon the colonizer‘s gift of language/ideas. She adds ahead that the anti-colonial nationalism all over Asia and Africa was not modeled upon simple imitation but also by defining its difference from Western notions of liberty, freedom and human dignity. She states that Nationalism engages in a complex process of contesting as well as appropriating colonialist versions of the past. Nationalist invites us to disregard anti-colonialism and radical potential of Nationalism, to include ‗all‘ the people, the ordinary folk, to celebrate diversity and speak for the ‗entire‘ imagined community. Loomba asserts that the power of nationalism, its continuing appeal, lies precisely in its ability to speak successfully on behalf of all the people. According to Loomba, in ‗Metropolitan‘ nations as well as the ‗Third World‘ ones, the difficulty of creating national cultures that might preserve, indeed nourish, internal differences has emerged as a major issue in our time.

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Ania Loomba states that European Nationalism was discredited over the course of the twentieth century by its association with fascism and colonialism and it‘s the Third World variant was legitimized through its connection with anti- colonialism. She adds ahead that in contemporary mainstream European or American discourse, nationalism is usually regarded as an exclusively the ‗Third World Problem‘. She points out further that pan-nationalism includes the movements like- Negritude movement and pan-Africanism. In these movements ‗nation‘ takes another meaning, a sense of shared culture and subjectivity and spiritual essence that stretches across the divisions of nations as political entities. She argues further the concept pan-Africanism:

Pan-Africanism generally refers to a similar movement in the English- speaking world, by and large the work of black people living in Britain. Both these movements articulated pan-national racial solidarity, demanded an end to white supremacy and imperialist domination and positively celebrated blackness, and especially African blackness, as a distinct racial- cultural way of being. (2005:176)

Here Loomba points out the struggle of African black people to challenge the white supremacy in literary world. She argues ahead that Negritude is a reactive position, and yet it tries to create a black identity free of colonialism‘s taint. She refers the thought of Fanon who asserts: It is the white man who creates the Negro. But it is the Negro who creates Negritude (1967:47). The nationalism is not the simple opposite of ‗pan-nationalism‘ or hybridity, it is the neat inverse of ‗authenticity‘. Loomba states that anti-colonial nationalism is a struggle to represent, create or recover a culture and a self-hood that has been systematically repressed and eroded during colonial rule. Anti-colonial nationalism can only be taken as representative of the subaltern voice if we homogenize the category ‗subaltern‘ and simplify enormously our notion of speaking.

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5.7 SUMMING UP:

Ania Loomba proved herself as a dominant theorist in the contemporary Indian criticism. Her style of writing is very simple and illustrative one. Her writing becomes the worthwhile contribution in Indian literary criticism. The clarity in her presentation of ideas with quite explanations is observed. She is a fine reader who could provide a kind of commentary on contrary opinions about various concepts. Her noteworthy book, Colonialism/postcolonialism is a kind of general introduction to various post-colonial studies. Ania Loomba‘s research focuses on Renaissance literature and history, which she examines through the lenses of gender studies and colonial and postcolonial studies. She has written extensively on early modern drama and culture, Shakespeare, modern performances and adaptations of Shakespeare, the women‘s movement and feminist theory and politics. She examines the key features of the ideologies and history of colonialism, the relationship of colonial discourse to literature, the challenges to colonialism, surveying anti-colonial discourses and recent developments in post-colonial theories and histories and how sexuality is figured in the text of colonialism, and also how contemporary feminist ideas and concepts intersect with those of post-colonialist thought. Her achievement, in some senses, is the most considerable of all, because she works mainly in the most prolifically minded and competitive field within English Studies, namely Shakespeare.

Ania Loomba gets lot interest in teaching about the histories and literatures of race, colonialism, gender and nation-formation from the sixteenth centuries to the present. She expresses her studied views on Shakespeare, other early modern dramatists and South Asian writing. The question did Shakespeare and his contemporaries think at all in terms of "race"? has generated anxiety in Ania Loomba. It gave her strength to study Shakespeare from that point of view. Examining the depiction of cultural, religious, and ethnic difference in

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Shakespeare's plays, Loomba considers how the seventeenth-century ideas differed from the later ideologies of "race" that emerged during colonialism, as well as from older ideas about barbarism, blackness, and religious difference. Her analysis of Shakespeare‘s plays explores how his ideas of race were shaped by beliefs about colour, religion, nationality, class, money and gender.

Ania Loomba seems to be an original critical writer who does not reflect special impact of any foreign or native critical writer. Her reading of many writers is noteworthy through which she has developed some ideas regarding many concepts such as colonialism, post-colonialism, feminism, ideology, colonial or post-colonial identities etc. of her own. She presents her special comments on Shakespeare in regard with ‗race‘, ‗religion‘ and ‗colour‘.

Though she has not developed any theories of her own, her work is quite useful in understanding different theories of various foreign or native critics. She has connected herself with globalization by writing in English language. Her views on Shakespeare could give her an international fame. Loomba's scholarship is rigorous, carefully grounding interpretation of the plays in the ideologies of Shakespeare's time, race and colonialism have certainly become important Shakespearean topics in recent years and one could not hope for a more authoritative and accessible discussion of them than that provided by Ania Loomba.

With new coverage of emerging debates around globalization, her book, Colonialism/postcolonialism will continue to serve as the ideal guide for advanced students and teachers in regard with colonial discourse theory, postcolonial studies or postcolonial theory. Various theories of resistance are observed for considering the crucial debates they engender about authenticity and hybridity, the nation, ethnicity and colonial identities. Theories of nationalism and pan-nationalism and how they are fractured by gender, class and ideological

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divides are considered. Finally she considers the place of postcolonial studies in the context of globalization.

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