The literature of exile and imaginary homelands in salmon rushdie, bharati mukherjee, and v. s. naipaul Essay

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The effects of the large scale displacement of peoples, their forced migration, their deportation, their movement to new lands in which they made themselves masters over others, or became subjects of the masters of their new homes - in fact, the whole historical violence of the era of empire and colonies echoes down the years and makes itself felt today.


Salman Rushdie, Bharati Mukherjee and V.S. Naipaul can all, in their different ways, be considered writers in exile. They have all travelled across the sea, all have come to a new "foreign" land, each one interacts with the English language as both a home for their words and an alien tongue. And within these three writers' works we can see the operations of exile, how their biographical and literary exiles come to be processed and represented, reflected and distorted, and the effect that the notion of exile that pervades their work has on the literary and historical contexts that are their new homes. They treat exile, not simply as a condition of the post-colonial world, but as a central means to understand the self. Rather than labelling them proponents of any post-colonial literature, therefore, we should perhaps call these three novelists the most important artists of a new genre: a literature of exile.
Salman Rushdie is an Anglo-Indian, writing in English, often on the subject of the home he le ...
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