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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Grotesque realism in Dambudzo Marechera's drama
Author:Seda, OwenISNI
Periodical:The English Academy Review (ISSN 1753-5360)
Geographic term:Zimbabwe
literary criticism
About person:Dambudzo Marechera (1952-1987)ISNI
Abstract:The Zimbabwean writer Dambudzo Marechera has been hailed for the modernist influences in his works. Marechera's literary outputs have also continued to fascinate contemporary readers because of the writer's overtly autobiographical writing style that was based on his outrageous lifestyle. While this article acknowledges the frequent observation that Marechera's work displays consistency of style, focus and purpose across his chosen literary genres (namely the novel, the poem, the short story and drama), the author focuses on the least studied genre in Marechera's literary output, his drama. He argues that as an embodied art form that is meant for performance rather than private reading as literature, drama allows Marechera to perform the body as a significant site for elements of grotesque realism in his works. Using selected plays by Dambudzo Marechera as illustrations, the article analyses the extent to which Marechera's plays present the body in performance as a site of post-independence social criticism where, as Mikhail Bakhtin and others critics observe, the material bodily principle with its predilection for consumption, food, drink, merry-making, death, excrement and sexual reproduction is exposed. Bibliogr., sum. [Journal abstract]