Iterative Mimicry as Writing Back: Role Reversion in Coetzee’s Foe, Disgrace and Life and Times of Michael K

Document Type: Research article

Author

MSc student in Shahid Beheshti University

Abstract

This Article investigates John Maxwell Coetzee’s three well known novels, Foe (1986), Disgrace (1999) and Life and Times of Michael K (1983) to analyze the colonial pattern of the marginal characters. The theoretical framework is based on Bhabha and Spivak concentrating on the economy of the male identity in post-colonial context. From Bhabha, notions like mimicry, hybridity and change and from Spivak the subaltern’s inaudibility of voice are appropriated. Derrida’s idea of iterability is also applied. The intention is to follow the instances of mimicry and examine if Coetzee’s literature manages to have political and ethical significance, as Spivak believes. It was concluded that resistance in Coetzee’s novels is an iterative moment signifying through recurring role reversions in the colonial discourse. Coetzee’s novels do not conclude with actualization of political betterment, yet the iterative quality of his significations invites us to reread his novels and reconsider the political and ethical questions. The ultimate meanings of his novels in the mind of the reader is inviting him to make political decisions, though seemingly metaphorical and apolitical.
Keywords:Coetzee, Mimicry, Iterability, Bhabha, Spivak.

Keywords


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