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Metaphors of Memory and Modernity in South Asian Anglophone Novels and Films

Nadia Butt (Justus Liebig University Giessen)

“Metaphors of Memory and Modernity in South Asian Anglophone Novels and Films “

New Frontiers in Memory Studies

Frankfurt, 03 February 2015

Click here to see a video recording of the lecture.

This paper sets out to examine the metaphors of memory and modernity in contemporary South Asian Anglophone literatures and films. Divided into two parts, the first part of the paper theorises memory and modernity by particularly addressing the idea of multiple modernities in non-Western contexts. How modernity needs to be understood in South Asian literary and cultural contexts and what kind of connection exists between memory and modernity remain the fundamental strands in this part.

Part two analyses various examples from recent works of fiction by Indian and Pakistani writers as well as films in order to address metaphors of memory and modernity from the perspectives of globalised modernity. Thus, I aim to highlight the role of these metaphors in providing us deeper insights into different forms of cultural trajectories in the face of ‘modernity at large’ within the realms of fiction and films.

Furthermore, I seek to demonstrate contemporary South Asian fiction and film presenting another phase of memory constellations which can be discussed with reference to the ‘transcultural turn’ in memory studies. In conclusion, the paper underlines the significance of commemorative tropes in making sense of modern memory in the media of literature and film.