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Journal of English Philology

Ed. by Kornexl, Lucia / Lenker, Ursula / Middeke, Martin / Rippl, Gabriele / Stein, Daniel Thomas

CiteScore 2018: 0.22

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.130
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.336

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Volume 130, Issue 3


‘Metroglorification and diffuse urbanism’: Literarische repräsentationen des postkolonialen im palimpsestraum der ‘neuen’ metropolen

Cecile Sandten
Published Online: 2012-10-19 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ang-2012-0501


The notion of ‘new’ metropolises alludes to the multilayered ways of life inside as well as outside, or even ‘downside’ of the cityscapes in the postcolonial societies. This holds true to what can be identified ‘new’ metropolises such as Bombay, Delhi or Lagos. Unlike the normative conception of the metropolis in the West, seen through the concepts of “metroglorification” and “diffuse urbanism”, these ‘new’ metropolises disclose the postcolonial city’s own subversive nature of underworlds morphing into overworlds, where tradition, modernity (and postmodernity) collide in the most unrelenting and dynamic fashion. The texts selected for analysis in this essay include Suketu Mehta’s Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found (2004), Kushwant Sing’s Delhi (1990) and Chris Abani’s GraceLand (2005). While elaborating on the themes of palimpsest-like layering in these texts, this essay aims to show, via the eyes of postcolonial flâneurs, that postcolonial cities are essentially ‘new’ metropolises that do not lend themselves to an easy explanation or conceptual ornamentation. Instead, they bear features of dynamism and multiplex layering that is most categorically absent in the literature on urban studies and the postcolonial metropolises in general.

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Published Online: 2012-10-19

Published in Print: 2012-10-01

Citation Information: Anglia - Zeitschrift für englische Philologie, Volume 130, Issue 3, Pages 344–363, ISSN (Online) 1865-8938, ISSN (Print) 0340-5222, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ang-2012-0501.

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