The Other, The Big Other, and Othering

Critical theorists are particularly committed to opposing binary oppositions where one side is seen as privileged over or defining itself against an Other (often capitalized), for example, male/female, Occident/Orient, center/margin. Through such binary oppositions, Homi Bhabha explains, “The Other loses its power to signify, to negate, to initiate its historic desire, to establish its own… Read More The Other, The Big Other, and Othering

Introduction to Whiteness Studies

Whiteness studies investigates the parameters of white racial identity, locating its scope and function in systems of representation. This field of study takes as its founding premise the constructed nature of identity, a poststructuralist concept heralded by race theorists who argue that race itself is not a natural or biological category but rather a social… Read More Introduction to Whiteness Studies

Key Theories of Gayatri Spivak

A focus on Gayatri Spivak’s education and intellectual trajectory reveals a lifelong commitment to literary-critical studies alongside genuine political engagement. Spivak was born in Calcutta, India in 1942; she later attended Presidency College at the University of Calcutta. After graduating in English in 1959 she spent two more years in Calcutta as a graduate student,… Read More Key Theories of Gayatri Spivak

The Influence of Poststructuralism on Feminism

With the arrival of Poststructuralism on the critical scene, Feminism emerged as more eclectic and expanded its horizons to merge into the realms of other contemporary theories, thus giving rise to a plethora of rampant and dynamically developing areas such as cyberfeminism, ecofeminism, postcolonial, black feminism/womanism, cultural/radical feminism, liberal feminisms, materialist/neo-marxist feminism and so on.… Read More The Influence of Poststructuralism on Feminism

Postcolonialism

A critical analysis of the history, culture, literature and modes of discourse on the Third World countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean Islands and South America, postcolonialism concerns itself with the study of the colonization (which began as early as the Renaissance), the decolonization (which involves winning back and reconstituting the native cultures), and the neocolonising process… Read More Postcolonialism