Relations and Networks in South African Indian Writing


Writers of Indian origin seldom appear in the South African literary landscape, although the participation of Indian South Africans in the anti-apartheid struggle was anything but insignificant. The collective experiences of violence and the plea for reconciliation that punctuate the rhythms of post-apartheid South Africa delineate a national script in which ethnic, class, and gender affiliations coalesce and patterns of connectedness between diverse communities are forged. Relations and Networks in South African Indian Writing brings the experience of South African Indians to the fore, demonstrating how their search for identity is an integral part of the national scene’s project of connectedness. By exploring how ‘Indianness’ is articulated in the South African national script through the works of contemporary South African Indian writers, such as Aziz Hassim, Ahmed Essop, Farida Karodia, Achmat Dangor, Shamim Sarif, Ronnie Govender, Rubendra Govender, Neelan Govender, Tholsi Mudly, Ashwin Singh, and Imraan Coovadia, along with the prison memoirists Dr Goonam and Fatima Meer, the book offers a theoretical model of South–South subjectivities that is deeply rooted in the Indian Ocean world and its cosmopolitanisms. Relations and Networks demonstrates convincingly the permeability of identity that is the marker of the Indian Ocean space, a space defined by ‘relations and networks’ established within and beyond ethnic, class, and gender categories.

Isabel Alonso–Breto, M.J. Daymond, Felicity Hand, Salvador Faura, Farhad Khoyratty, Esther Pujolràs–Noguer, J. Coplen Rose, Modhumita Roy, Lindy Stiebel, Juan Miguel Zarandona

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Felicity Hand is a Senior Lecturer in the English Department of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, specializing in Indian, East African, and Indian Ocean writing.

Esther Pujolràs–Noguer lectures in American and postcolonial literature at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, with a focus on African and Indian Ocean literatures and cultures.
"Relations and Networks in South African Indian Writing deserves to be praised as a seminal reading in the field of Indian Ocean Studies. The volume represents an out-standing contribution to Postcolonial and Transnational Studies, promoting new views of old topics and, more importantly, foregrounding the significance of the social, historical and political networks of Indian origin that have consolidated the foundations of the democratic South Africa in light of the contemporary."
-Óscar Ortega Montero, Universitat de Barcelona, in Nexus 2019-02, pages 51-54
The book is targeted towards consolidated researchers working within the field of postcolonial studies as well as postgraduate students from disciplines including South African Studies, Gender and Ethnic Studies.
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