The first book of Ghosh’s projected trilogy about the Opium Wars—waged between the British crown and China to open the Chinese markets to western opium—provides Alessandro Vescovi with the material for assessing the writer’s poetics of historical novel writing. Thorough research, comprehensiveness and precise imagination are the keywords of his poetical and political stance. Sea of Poppies (2008) is first and foremost a research novel, based upon historical documents of diverse origin and authority. These range from official accounts and reports about an opium factory in Patna, to documents found in remote archives, such as the British Library, the Mauritius National Archives, Canton’s Library. Vescovi reads some of these sources against the actual fictional rendition of the plight of opium workers in nineteenth-century Bihar. The imperial sources depicted the factory as a clean and well lighted place, were efficiency was the governing principle. On the contrary, the same factory is described by Ghosh as a scene from Dante’s Inferno. The colonizers’ discourse is thus counteracted by the novelist’s comprehensive research and imaginative microhistories which expose the lies embedded in the macrohistory of the imperial project.
|Titolo:||Voicing unspoken histories. Amitav Ghosh's Sea of Poppies as research novel|
VESCOVI, ALESSANDRO (Primo)
|Parole Chiave:||Amitav Ghosh; historical novel; Indian English literature; Sea of Poppies; Ibis trilogy|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore L-LIN/10 - Letteratura Inglese|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2011|
|Tipologia:||Book Part (author)|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||03 - Contributo in volume|