2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

Colonialism and Nationalism in Attia Hosain's Sunlight on a Broken Column
Melissa W. Kapitan
Dr. Hena Ahmad, Faculty Mentor

The epigraph to Attia Hosain's novel Sunlight on a Broken Column (1961) is an excerpt from T. S. Eliot's The Hollow Men, a post-World War I poem about change, religion, and self-determination, and it introduces themes central to the novel's focus on India's independence. The fact that Hosain draws on an English author is emblematic of the ways in which the novel reflects the influence of British colonialism in India, and her novel ultimately provides a manifestation of the colonized awareness of a national identity. Further impact of colonialism in the novel is visible in the continued European presence in the detailed descriptions of the education system and political thought advocating the nation state. The characters that are actively involved in the Independence movement- Saleem the radical Muslim and Asad the voice of moderation- clearly show the influence of European concepts of nationalism.

Keywords: Post-colonialism, Indian literature, Nationalism, Colonialism

Topic(s):English

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 15-2
Location: VH 1232
Time: 8:15

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