The concept of 'margins' denotes geographical, economic, demographic, cultural and political positioning in relation to a perceived centre. This book aims to question the term 'marginal' itself, to hear the voices talking 'across' borders and not only to or through an English centre. The first part of the book examines debates on the political and poetic choice of language, drawing attention to significant differences between the Irish and Scottish strategies. It includes a discussion of the complicated dynamic of woman and nation by Aileen Christianson, which explores the work of twentieth-century Scottish and Irish women writers. The book also explores masculinities in both English and Scottish writing from Berthold Schoene, which deploys sexual difference as a means of testing postcolonial theorizing. A different perspective on the notion of marginality is offered by addressing 'Englishness' in relation to 'migrant' writing in prose concerned with India and England after Independence. The second part of the book focuses on a wide range of new poetry to question simplified margin/centre relations. It discusses a historicising perspective on the work of cultural studies and its responses to the relationship between ethnicity and second-generation Irish musicians from Sean Campbell. The comparison of contemporary Irish and Scottish fiction which identifies similarities and differences in recent developments is also considered. In each instance the writers take on the task of examining and assessing points of connection and diversity across a particular body of work, while moving away from contrasts which focus on an English 'norm'.
. Kobena Mercer offers
Fanon, postcolonialism and the ethics of difference
a possible answer to the complex question regarding why Fanon came
to be considered as the chief exponent of postcolonialtheorizing. In
‘Busy in the Ruins of Wretched Phantasia’, he writes:
As a result of epochal shifts over the past ten to fifteen years,
from post-Fordism to post-Communism, there probably isn’t
anyone whose identity has not been touched by the bewildering
uncertainties of living in a world with no stable center … These
changed circumstances profoundly alter the way in
ex-colonized peoples and developed in the 1970s and
1980s in tandem with globalization. B.R. Tomlinson, ‘What Was the
Third World?’, Journal of Contemporary History, 38:2 (2003),
133 In his article ‘“Neo-colonialism” or “Globalization”?: Postcolonial
Theory and the Demands of Political Economy’, Nagesh Rao critiques postcolonialism for its eclecticism and for its ahistoricism.
He conceives of ‘neo-colonialism’ and ‘globalization’ as two distinct
discourses that are ‘yoked together’ in postcolonialtheorizing (p.
165). Drawing on Nkrumah’s Neo