The Postsecular Imagination: Postcolonialism, Religion, and Literature

The Postsecular Imagination: Postcolonialism, Religion, and Literature

by Manav Ratti

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Overview

This book presents a rich, interdisciplinary study of postsecularism as an affirmational political possibility emerging through the potentials and limits of both secular and religious thought. While secularism and religion can foster inspiration and creativity, they also can be linked with violence, civil war, partition, majoritarianism, and communalism, especially within the framework of the nation-state. Through close readings of novels that engage with animism, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Sikhism, Manav Ratti examines how questions of ethics and the need for faith, awe, wonder, and enchantment can find expression and significance in the wake of such crises.

While focusing on Michael Ondaatje and Salman Rushdie, Ratti addresses the work of several other writers as well, including Shauna Singh Baldwin, Mahasweta Devi, Amitav Ghosh, and Allan Sealy. Ratti shows the extent of courage and risk involved in the radical imagination of these postsecular works, examining how writers experiment with and gesture toward the compelling paradoxes of a non-secular secularism and a non-religious religion.

Drawing on South Asian Anglophone literatures and postcolonial theory, and situating itself within the most provocative contemporary debates in secularism and religion, this book will be important for readers interested in the relations among culture, literature, theory, and politics.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780415480970
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 12/21/2012
Series: Routledge Research in Postcolonial Literatures Series
Pages: 270
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.78(d)

About the Author

Manav Ratti is Assistant Professor, Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies, Warwick University.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. Post-Secularism and Nationalism: Michael Ondaatje’s The English Patient and Allan Sealy’s The Everest Hotel: A Calendar 3. The Aesthetics Of Violence: Michael Ondaatje’s Anil’s Ghost and Shauna Singh Baldwin’s What The Body Remembers 4. Secular Blasphemy, Post-Secular Faith: Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses 5. After Religion, After Secularism: Amitav Ghosh’s The Shadow Lines and In An Antique Land, Salman Rushdie’s Haroun and the Sea of Stories, and Mahasweta Devi’s "Pterodactyl, Puran Sahay, and Pirtha" Index

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