Literature and Colonialism
General Catalog Course Title:
Literature and Colonialism
Terms Offered:
Fall 2013
Spring 2010
Spring 2009

In this course we will read a number of twentieth-century novels published in the last decades of the French empire, all of which are set in colonized territories.  Produced in a variety of modes and genres (autobiographical fiction, roman d'aventure, philosophical novel, quasi-ethnography, political denunciation and/or satire), these novels emerge out of a variety of cultural situations and geographic locations (including Southeast Asia, the Maghreb, and sub-Saharan Africa), and were written by authors positioned differently with respect to the opposition between colonizer and colonized.  In our discussions, we will consider the historical specificity of each text while remaining open to insights made possible by reading comparatively.  In other words, our goal will not be to synthesize a monolithic theory of literature and colonialism but rather to analyze individual texts while attempting to be attentive to common textual strategies, formal elements, and practices of representing colonial space, dynamics of power, and cultural difference.

For more detailed information about classes, please visit the UC Berkeley Online Schedule of Classes.