Shaken Wisdom: Irony and Meaning in Postcolonial African Fiction

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University of Virginia Press, 2011 - Literary Criticism - 178 pages
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In her focus on irony and meaning in postcolonial African fiction, Gloria Nne Onyeoziri refers to an internal subversion of the discourse of the wise and the powerful, a practice that has played multiple roles in the circulation of knowledge, authority, and opinion within African communities; in the interpretation of colonial and postcolonial experience; and in the ongoing resistance to tyrannies in African societies. But irony is always reversible and may be used to question the oppressed as well as the oppressor, shaking all presumptions of wisdom. Although the author cites numerous African writers, she selects six works by Chinua Achebe, Ahmadou Kourouma, and Calixthe Beyala for her primary analysis.

Modern Language Initiative

 

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Contents

From Rhetoric to Semantics
23
Interpreting Irony
47
Pragmatics and Ahmadou Kouroumas Postcolonial State
65
Chinua Achebes Arrow of God and the Pragmatics
86
New Conceptions of the Ironic Voice
114
When the Handshake Has Become Another Thing
143
References
163
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About the author (2011)

Gloria Nne Onyeoziri, Associate Professor in the Department of French, Hispanic, and Italian Studies at the University of British Columbia, is the author of La parole poétique d’Aimé Césaire: essai de sémantique littéraire.

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