By Seanna Sumalee Oakley
Whereas loads of postcolonial feedback has tested how the approaches of hybridity, mestizaje, creolization, and syncretism influence African diasporic literature, Oakley employs the heuristic of the "commonplace" to recast our feel of the politics of such literature. Her research of ordinary poetics finds that postcolonial poetic and political moods and aspirations are way more advanced than has been admitted. African Atlantic writers summon the utopian strength of Romanticism, which have been plagued by Anglo-European exclusiveness and racial entitlement, and venture it as an possible, differentially universal destiny. placing poets Frankétienne (Haiti), Werewere Liking (Côte d'Ivoire), Derek Walcott (St Lucia), and Claudia Rankine (Jamaica) in discussion with Romantic poets and theorists, in addition to with the more moderen thinkers Édouard Glissant, Walter Benjamin, and Emmanuel Levinas, Oakley exhibits how African Atlantic poets officially revive Romantic kinds, starting from the social utopian manifesto to the poète maudit, of their pursuit of a redemptive allegory of African Atlantic studies. Common Places addresses concerns in African and Caribbean literary reviews, Romanticism, poetics, rhetorical thought, comparative literature, and translation idea, and extra, types a postcolonial critique within the aesthetic-ethical and "new aestheticist" vein.
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83 Commonplaces of Repetition and Redemption 27 As can be seen in the case of the idea of history, some of the common conceptual problems can be said to have been deposited ... on landscapes dialectically occasioned in Africa by a Europe’s supposedly one and only idea of Civilization, Modernity, or the Free Market. How is it going to be possible for us to think both modern and Afro-historically, in awareness of the ruptures in the economic, cultural and political experiences on the continent, while acknowledging that these experiences, often violent in the extreme, were regularly initiated and conducted in the name of a civilizing Reason.
79. Miller, French Atlantic, 69, 70. Calhoun intends the possessive sense of “peculiar” as was normal nineteenth-century usage in his 1837 “Speech on the Reception of Abolition Petitions” (John C. Calhoun, Speeches of John. C. Calhoun Delivered in the Congress of the United States from 1811 to the Present Time, New York: Harper and Brothers, 1843, 222-26). 81 Quoted in Kwame Gyekye, An Essay on African Philosophical Thought: The Akan Conceptual Scheme, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995, 176.
18 Glissant is punning, albeit with serious intention, on the contrary morphemes “per” and “dur” – “through” and “hard” or “lasting”. What does this difficulty and endurance imply for peoples who have suffered the consequences of the concept of universality and who then react by avowing its contrary in the creed of particularity and difference? The poetics Glissant seeks would enable us to imagine from within contradictions and contraries and to forge creative appositional bonds among cultures, as Melas points out in a quotation cited earlier.