chapter  3
14 Pages

Transnational Identity and the Muslim Diaspora in Camilla Gibb’s Sweetness in the Belly


Western philosophical conceptualization of history as angel, specter, or spirit into dialogue with Thomas King's Truth and Bright Water, a novel that is shaped by the appearances of ghostly animal conjurations and trickster poltergeists that emerge from a violent colonial past. This chapter argues that King's animal ghosts not only contest the anthropocentricity of current theoretical understandings of trauma and colonialism, but also of the implications of pastness and nationalism contained in the term 'postcolonial' itself. Importantly, the connection made here between Indigenous and ecological politics does not, and should not, rely upon an assumption that indigeneity is somehow closer to or synonymous with animality, which would reinforce rather than challenge colonial narratives. Through the inclusion of historical subjects that transgress the borders of the human and the nation, Truth and Bright Water puts forth a radical approach to notions of politics and time that may echo some Continental philosophical conceptions of haunting.