Originally published in 1995. V. S. Naipaul, a Trinidadian of Indian descent living in the West, has written in many forms. Through an analysis of five works by Naipaul written in different modes and periods of his life, this study posits a relationship between a cultural condition and a choice of genre and narrative, or more specifically between cultural displacement and the writing of autobiography. Examining an aspect of Naipaul’s development as a post-colonial writer, this book is of interest in exploring the way that concepts of self determine the writing of texts. It considers ‘deflected autobiographies’, genre boundaries, quests for origin and expression, and Lacanian psychoanalytic theory.
Introduction 1. A House for Mr Biswas 2. The Overcrowded Barracoon 3. In a Free State 4. Finding the Centre 5. The Enigma of Arrival. Conclusion
Reissuing works originally published between 1960 and 1995, this varied set offers an outstanding collection of scholarship. It includes topics that touch on psychology, feminist criticism, philosophy and litrerary history as well as examinations of autobiography as genre.