20th Century British & Irish Seminar: Nicole Winsor


Location: 119 O'Shaughnessy Hall

Postcolonial Modernist Impasses in Irish and Australian Drama

In the Oxford Handbook to Postcolonial Studies published in 2013 Graham Huggan asks, “what are we to make of this ‘reconciliatory’ strand in contemporary postcolonial theory and criticism, which seems initially at least to be so profoundly at odds with the field’s revolutionary credentials? Are ‘revolutionary’ and ‘reconciliatory’ postcolonialisms mutually exclusive or does their negotiated relationship with critical revisionism offer a new, triangulated way of looking at and creatively accounting for the constitutive contradictions in the postcolonial field?” By examining what happens when revolutionary and reconciliatory impulses clash in W.B. Yeats’s The Dreaming of the Bones (1916) and Wesley Enoch and Deborah Mailman’s The 7 Stages of Grieving, Nicole Winsor will take up this question, arguing that revolutionary and reconciliatory impulses in postcolonial modernist drama are mutually constitutive and the clash between the two is precisely what allows for radical innovations of theatrical form.