Reading Literature in a Multicultural Situation: Some Possibilities in the Indian Context

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The article tries to problematize the way literature is read in India and offers suggestions for reading it in a more inclusive manner, a manner that is sensitive to the multicultural democracy of India. . It argues that the Indian plurality inheres in its comparative but compatible and even more significantly, complementary cultural modes. Any cultural production – be it literature, cinema, or art – on closer examination bears witness to this fact. If the premise is tenable, it can be used as an empowering and equivocal, egalitarian and symbiotic reading practice with a potential to usher in an enabling critical perspective to approach and comprehend linguistically diverse literature. In such an interfacial convergence and critique of diverse literary productions, each participating text complements and enhances the potential of the other, thus enriching one another by mutual reflection and refraction. Such a study will not only broaden the critical scope of the works read against, in tandem, along and through each other, but would also be an improvement over the comparatist paradigm as we understand and deploy it. The inter-textual echoes, gleaned through this reading, would cut across and foreground each other for each text would act as an analytic and contextual reference for the other.


Keywords: Multiculturalism, Interfacial Praxis, Colonialism, Post-Colonialism, Comparative Ethos, Indian Writing in English
Stream: Literary Arts Practices
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
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Prof. Anup Beniwal

Dean, School of Humanities and Social Sciences and Education, Department of English., GGS IP University
Delhi, Delhi, India

Presently Professor at University School of Humanities and Social Sciences, GGS IP University, Delhi, Dr Anup Beniwal has been teaching English and Communication Skills to both Undergraduate and Post graduate students for the last 19 years. His areas of academic and research interest include Indian English Fiction on Partition, Indian Writing in English Translation, Translation and Communication Skills. Apart from authoring a book entitled Representing Partition: History, Violence and Narration, he has regularly contributed research papers, review articles and translations in prestigious national/refereed journals, newspapers and magazines.

Ref: A09P0770