ABSTRACT

Recent work in colonial studies has focused on the contested and fragmented nature of (post)colonial discourses. In this emerging body of work, authors attempt to analyze colonialism and the discourse it produced from a cultural framework that is anti-essentialist. As Nicholas Dirks points out: "Colonialism not only has had cultural effects that have too often been either ignored or displaced into inexorable logics of modernization and world capitalism, it was itself a cultural product of control."1 And, as Nicholas Thomas puts it: "Colonial cultures are not simple ideologies that mask, mystify, or rationalize forms of oppression that are external to them; they are also expressive and constitutive of colonial relationships in themselves."2