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Title:Redefining mimicry: quoting techniques and the role of readers in locally published Ghanaian fiction
Author:Newell, StephanieISNI
Periodical:Research in African Literatures
Geographic term:Ghana
External link:http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/research_in_african_literatures/v031/31.1newell.html
Abstract:Migration and mimicry have become key concepts in recent theoretical debates about the global flows of people, ideas and ideologies in the postcolonial world. By focusing on the way that foreign forms are transposed into relatively static local cultures, theorists of postcoloniality overlook the complexity of local receptive processes. The present author argues that the construction of the local as a mimic needs to be redefined so that it starts to allow for local authors' and audiences' active production of genres and meanings. She reinterprets the concept of mimicry that is prevalent in postcolonial theory by focusing, first, upon Ghanaian authors' narrative techniques, and second, upon reader responses to popular literature. Ghanaian authors have employed a distinctive, culturally specific quoting technique, selecting and incorporating quotations from foreign literary forms. Readers participate in the co-creation of novels, and different groups of readers might produce different interpretations of the same narrative. These new texts use imitation as a primary strategy, but they bear little relation to the narratives of the metropolitan centres. Bilbiogr., notes, ref.