The ugly Americans: Gender, geopolitics and the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism in the novels of Santha Rama Rau

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

This essay tracks the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism and its gendered embodiments using Santha Rama Rau's Cold War novels, Remember the House (1956) and The Adventuress (1970). Rama Rau's heroines, Indira Goray and Catalina Gomez, flirt with geopolitics of a post-war world that appears to offer them new freedoms. They flirt, too, with the possibilities of transnational affiliation and become schooled in very different experiences of "new womanhood" in the context of decolonization. What the heroines and the novels share is a preoccupation with America and Americans, who appear to hold the promise of a new, borderless future. The essay examines Rama Rau's ambivalence about the virtues of the US as a Cold War superpower, registering some claims about the fate of the female postcolonial novelist in the process.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-19
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Commonwealth Literature
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2006

Fingerprint

Cosmopolitanism
Heroine
Cold War
Geopolitics
Novel
Ambivalence
Womanhood
Decolonization
Embodiment
Novelist
Fate

Keywords

  • American power
  • Career
  • Cold War
  • Cosmopolitanism
  • Nationalism
  • Postcolonialism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Literature and Literary Theory

Cite this

@article{192ac4e7b8774389acc9edd0edb1066b,
title = "The ugly Americans: Gender, geopolitics and the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism in the novels of Santha Rama Rau",
abstract = "This essay tracks the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism and its gendered embodiments using Santha Rama Rau's Cold War novels, Remember the House (1956) and The Adventuress (1970). Rama Rau's heroines, Indira Goray and Catalina Gomez, flirt with geopolitics of a post-war world that appears to offer them new freedoms. They flirt, too, with the possibilities of transnational affiliation and become schooled in very different experiences of {"}new womanhood{"} in the context of decolonization. What the heroines and the novels share is a preoccupation with America and Americans, who appear to hold the promise of a new, borderless future. The essay examines Rama Rau's ambivalence about the virtues of the US as a Cold War superpower, registering some claims about the fate of the female postcolonial novelist in the process.",
keywords = "American power, Career, Cold War, Cosmopolitanism, Nationalism, Postcolonialism",
author = "Burton, {Antoinette M}",
year = "2006",
month = "12",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/0021989406065768",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "41",
pages = "5--19",
journal = "Journal of Commonwealth Literature",
issn = "0021-9894",
publisher = "SAGE Publications Ltd",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - The ugly Americans

T2 - Gender, geopolitics and the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism in the novels of Santha Rama Rau

AU - Burton, Antoinette M

PY - 2006/12/1

Y1 - 2006/12/1

N2 - This essay tracks the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism and its gendered embodiments using Santha Rama Rau's Cold War novels, Remember the House (1956) and The Adventuress (1970). Rama Rau's heroines, Indira Goray and Catalina Gomez, flirt with geopolitics of a post-war world that appears to offer them new freedoms. They flirt, too, with the possibilities of transnational affiliation and become schooled in very different experiences of "new womanhood" in the context of decolonization. What the heroines and the novels share is a preoccupation with America and Americans, who appear to hold the promise of a new, borderless future. The essay examines Rama Rau's ambivalence about the virtues of the US as a Cold War superpower, registering some claims about the fate of the female postcolonial novelist in the process.

AB - This essay tracks the career of postcolonial cosmopolitanism and its gendered embodiments using Santha Rama Rau's Cold War novels, Remember the House (1956) and The Adventuress (1970). Rama Rau's heroines, Indira Goray and Catalina Gomez, flirt with geopolitics of a post-war world that appears to offer them new freedoms. They flirt, too, with the possibilities of transnational affiliation and become schooled in very different experiences of "new womanhood" in the context of decolonization. What the heroines and the novels share is a preoccupation with America and Americans, who appear to hold the promise of a new, borderless future. The essay examines Rama Rau's ambivalence about the virtues of the US as a Cold War superpower, registering some claims about the fate of the female postcolonial novelist in the process.

KW - American power

KW - Career

KW - Cold War

KW - Cosmopolitanism

KW - Nationalism

KW - Postcolonialism

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=34347301678&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=34347301678&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/0021989406065768

DO - 10.1177/0021989406065768

M3 - Review article

AN - SCOPUS:34347301678

VL - 41

SP - 5

EP - 19

JO - Journal of Commonwealth Literature

JF - Journal of Commonwealth Literature

SN - 0021-9894

IS - 2

ER -