Date of Graduation
Doctor of Philosophy in English (PhD)
M. Keith Booker
Second Committee Member
American Culture, Historiographic Metafiction, Late Capitalism, Postmodernism, Salman Rushdie
The aim of this study is to prove that Rushdie's recent novels are not postcolonial in the sense that they abandon the colonial/colonized binary, the embrace of hybridity, and the theme of undermining the coercion and domination of the colonial country assumed in postcolonial discourse. Instead, his recent fiction is labeled postmodern because it is filled with exuberant postmodern techniques such as historiographic metafiction, the hegemony of mode of productions, the postmodern fragmented self, and suspicions of grand narrative. Furthermore, I will argue that there is an association between Rushdie's postmodern narrative technique (his mixing of history and fantasy) and his political stance when it comes to his notion about America, and that postmodernism enables Rushdie to question the historical "truth" and allows him to rewrite or reconstruct South Asia's history which then sets in motion the western discourse of hegemony. Contrary to commonplace commentaries about his anti-colonialist stance, Rushdie's historical and fictional narrative not only assures the hegemonic discourse of late capitalism but also reflects an imperialist political stance. This will be demonstrated by considering Rushdie's manipulation in his novels of alternate history, cultural modes of production such as commodity fetishism and media, postmodernism or the cultural logic of late capitalism, and historiographic metafiction; furthermore, these features of postmodernism which Rushdie uses in his recent novels indicate his position as a postmodern writer.
Akkawi, Aya, "Salman Rushdie in the Postmodern Current: New Venues, New Values" (2014). Theses and Dissertations. 2200.