Empire, the National, and the Postcolonial, 1890-1920: Resistance in Interaction

Published by Oxford University Press, 2002

Empire, the National, and the Postcolonial, 1890-1920 explores the political co-operations and textual connections which linked anti-colonial, nationalist, and modernist groups and individuals in the empire in the years 1890-1920. By developing the key motifs of lateral interaction and colonial interdiscursivity, Boehmer builds a picture of the imperial world as an intricate network of surprising contacts and margin-to-margin interrelationships, and of modernism as a far more constellated cultural phenomenon than previously understood. Individual case studies consider Irish support for the Boers in 1899-1902, the path-breaking radical partnership of the Englishwoman Sister Nivedita and the Bengali extremist Aurobindo Ghose, Sol Plaatje’s conflicted South African nationalism, and the cross-border, cosmopolitan involvements of W. B. Yeats, Rabindranath Tagore, and Leonard Woolf. Underlining Frantz Fanon’s perception that ‘a colonized people is not alone’, this richly detailed book sustains a ‘broad and challenging thesis’ and provides new possibilities for ‘reading resistance between the margins’ (Interventions).

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