Identifier

etd-09272009-065154

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

English

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

This dissertation analyzes American writing from and about the former British and French colonies in order to critique postcolonial theory and also to establish a new genre of expatriate literature. Focusing on the works of J. P. Donleavy, Edith Wharton, Paul Bowles, and Paul Theroux, I argue that reading these Americans disrupts the binary concepts encouraged by postcolonial theory. This project rethinks important dichotomies such as colonizer/colonized, center/margin, metropolis/margin, civilized/primitive, and white/non-white by examining the ambiguous American character in the postcolonial context. I argue that by categorizing the themes of American literature in the colonies, and analyzing the similarities and differences with European colonial writing we will thus see these works emerge as a fascinating sub-genre of postcolonial literature. Furthermore, by examining these themes and this perspective it is possible to see a more complete picture of the complexities and gradations of identity in the postcolonial world.

Date

2009

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Rastogi, Pallavi

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