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Orsini, Francesca (2013) '‘Decreed out of existence: Multilingual India and World Literature’.' In: Parks, Tim and Zuccato, Edoardo, (eds.), Towards a Global Literature/Verso uni letteratura globalizzata. Milan: marcos y marcos, pp. 37-46. (Testo a fronte)

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In recent theorizations of world literature, it has been customary to consider only those works that circulate (either in a global language or in translation) as those which exist. Globalization then becomes an easy narrative of the triumph of English or English-language literature in the global literary market. And recent interventions (Vittorio Coletti, ) even posit that literary globalization means homogenization of tastes and styles. While no one can doubt this global circulation of literary texts, good reads, and commercial bestsellers, the question is—is this all the literature that exists and matters? In the context of South Asia, which has seen the fantastic global success of Indian, and more recently Pakistani, writing in English, this question has given rise to heated debates, either about the “authenticity” of writing in English and its capacity to “represent” the Indian experience (Meenakshi Mukherjee vs Vikram Chandra), or about the perceived “inferior quality” of the long traditions of writing in Indian languages (Rusdhie), or of their translations into English. These debates have had their time in India, and have shown the limits of understandings of world literature that focus only on circulation, on global market realities, and on the tastes of cosmopolitan readers. After we say that post-colonial Indian writers who do not use English have no space in the global arena, what space is left, what questions arise, what approaches are required?

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: world literature
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Centre for Cultural, Literary and Postcolonial Studies
Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of the Languages and Cultures of South Asia
ISBN: 9788871686783
Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2019 11:01

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