The Colonial Fortune in Contemporary Fiction in French

BookThe Colonial Fortune in Contemporary Fiction in French

The Colonial Fortune in Contemporary Fiction in French

Contemporary French and Francophone Cultures, 46


May 11th, 2017

Access Token


Other Formats



"The Colonial Fortune" highlights the features of a paracolonial aesthetics emanating from a significant body of contemporary Hexagonal and non-metropolitan texts. Authored by writers who are either directly involved in the debate about the colonial past and its remanence (J. M. G. Le Clézio, Paule Constant, Édouard Glissant, Tierno Monénembo, Marie NDiaye, and Leïla Sebbar) or who do not overtly manifest such concerns (Stéphane Audeguy, Marie Darrieussecq, Régis Jauffret, Pierre Michon, and Claude Simon), these works create a shared imaginary space permeated by the symbolic, rhetorical, and conceptual presence colonialism in our postcolonial era. The paracolonial describes the phenomena of revival, resurgence, remanence, and residue – in other words, the permanence of the colonial in contemporary imagination. It also addresses the re-imagining, revisiting, and recasting of the colonial in current works of literature (fiction, autobiography, and essay). The idea of the colonial fortune emerges as an interface between our era’s concerns with issues of fate, economics, legacy, and debt stemming from the understudied persistence of the colonial in today’s political and cultural conversation, and literature’s ways of making sense of them both sensorially and sensibly.

'First-rate scholarship ... overall, this is a serious, original and insightful study.'
Lydie E. Moudileno, University of Pennsylvania

'Oana Panaïté’s intriguingly titled Colonial Fortune in Contemporary Fiction in French is an ambitious and timely attempt to move the field of postcolonial studies on to new terrain both in theoretical reach and particular attention.'
Anna-Louise Milne, Francosphères

'This monograph will be of interest to any scholar working on contemporary French and Francophone literature, given the variety of disciplines the author draws from and insights that she offers to the reader. It bridges the gap between scholars focusing on metropolitan France and those working on francophone countries, as Panaïté points out a new disciplinary way forward.'
Nanar Khamo, Studies in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature

Author Information

Oana Panaïté is Ruth N. Halls Professor of French and Francophone Studies at Indiana University-Bloomington and the author of Des littératures-mondes en français. Écritures singulières, poétiques transfrontalières dans la prose contemporaine (Amsterdam/New York: Rodopi Press, 2012)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents
Section TitlePagePrice
A Primal Scene: The Colonial Fortune9
Part One: From Exotic Destinations to Colonial Destinies41
1. Departures: Orphans, Heirs and Adventurers43
2. Landscape as Vocation65
Part Two: Writing as Africans103
3. Distant Empathy105
4. Maps of Frenchness: Between Self-Invention and Delusion127
Part Three: Colonial Remanence149
5. Algeria’s Mortified Memory151
6. A Place of Dialogue172
An Unpayable Debt: For a Paracolonial Aesthetics179