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Continental Drift: From National Characters to Virtual Subjects
by Emily Apter
University of Chicago Press, 1999
Paper: 978-0-226-02350-2 | Cloth: 978-0-226-02349-6
Library of Congress Classification DC33.7.A695 1999
Dewey Decimal Classification 944.083

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ABOUT THIS BOOK
From xenophobic appropriations of Joan of Arc to Afro-futurism and cyberpunk, the "national" characters of the colonial era often seem to be dissolving into postnational and virtual subjects. In Continental Drift, Emily Apter deftly analyzes the French colonial and postcolonial experience as a case study in the erosion of belief in national destiny and the emergence of technologically mediated citizenship.

Among the many topics Apter explores are the fate of national literatures in an increasingly transnational literary climate; the volatile stakes of Albert Camus's life and reputation against the backdrop of Algerian civil strife; the use of literary and theatrical productions to "script" national character for the colonies; belly-dancing and aesthetic theory; and the impact of new media on colonial and postcolonial representation, from tourist photography to the videos of Digital Diaspora.

Continental Drift advances debates not just in postcolonial studies, but also in gender, identity, and cultural studies; ethnography; psychoanalysis; and performance studies.


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