Book Review: Ama Ato Aidoo’s Black-Eyed Squint and the ‘Voyage in’ Experience: Dis(re)Orienting Blackness and Subverting Colonial Tale
AbstractThis essay endeavors to read Ama Ata Aidoo’s Our Sister Killjoy with a postocolonially-inflected consciousness. It aims at demonstrating how her work could be read as a sophisticated postcolonial revision of the colonial travel narrative whereby the protagonist’s black-eyed squint operates as ‘the all-seeingeye’ to subvert the historically unbroken legacy of the Orientalist ideology. It tries to demonstrate how Sissie assumes authority and voice in an act that destabilizes the traditionally established modes of western representation. It is also an investigation into how Aidoo’s text adopts processes which “undo the Eurocentrism produced by the institution of the West’s trajectory” (Gross 1996: 240) through diverse acts of resistance and ‘various strategies of subversion and appropriation’. Her counter discursive strategies of resistance are shaped up in various ways by a feminist consciousness that attempts to articulate a distinct African version of identity and preserve cultural distinctiveness.
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