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M. G. Vassanji: Essays on His Works
Asma Sayed (Editor)
Guernica Editions, Spring 2014
356 pages
Trade Paperback
ISBN13: 9781550719963
ISBN10: 1550719963
$20.00 Canada, $20.00 US

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This collection was born of a conviction that Vassanji's contributions to the global literary scene merit more in-depth scholarly notice. The articles herein, most of which are comparative in focus, provide various interpretations of Vassanji's writings through a diversity of theoretical frameworks. The fulcrum of much of this research comes back to issues of globalization, transnationalism, identity, post-colonialism, cosmopolitanism and diaspora. It should also be noted that, while many critics have tried to fit Vassanji and his writing into national perimeters identifying him as Canadian, others as African or Indian, or all of these, none of the writers in this book argue that Vassanji, or his works, belong to any particular national paradigm. Rather, the articles recognize Vassanji's engagement with transnational issues and his preoccupation with history and politics, and concerns of home, migration, exile, loss, belonging, dislocation, violence, trauma, and identity as central to his writing. Included are a new and detailed interview with Vassanji and a previously unpublished article, authored by Vassanji himself. Among the contributors: Annie Cottier, Jonathan Hart, Jonathan Rollins, Warris Vianni, Amin Malak, and Nancy E. Batty.
While Vassanji finds refuge in writing, his characters -- many of whom, whether in No New Land, The In-Between World of Vikram Lall, or The Magic of Saida -- occupy a liminal state, and the angst synonymous with the state of being in diaspora.

Books by Asma Sayed

M. G. Vassanji: Essays on His Works