Created in the West Indies: Caribbean Perspectives on V.S. Naipaul updates and furthers the debates on the life and work of an internationally acclaimed writer, Nobel laureate and native son of Trinidad and Tobago. The book draws together the proceedings of a series of outstanding public lectures and an academic symposium that featured a distinguished cadre of Caribbean scholars who, during 2007, participated in a year-long schedule of activities initiated by the University of the West Indies, St Augustine campus, to honour the life and work of this highly accomplished ‘enigma’ of Caribbean letters.
The essays in this collection are organised into three sections that represent a compression of the multifaceted range of V.S. Naipaul’s creative concerns, thematic explorations, even obsessions, and philosophical persuasions. The singular power of these contributions is their ability to push at the borders of Naipaul scholarship, cutting new pathways for considering this most intriguing creative mind and offering fresh perspectives on the now familiar themes of postcolonial identity and nationalism, the fiction of history and history of fiction, home and belonging in a world characterised by flux, movement and cultural contact.
Controversy has always companioned Naipaul’s career. Not surprisingly, some of the contributions are unrelentingly honest in their exposé of Naipaul for his trademark impatience with the very societies that created his unique sensibility and his propensity for self-contradiction.
Contributors: Jean Antoine-Dunne; Edward Baugh; Bridget Brereton; Gordon Rohlehr; Evelyn O’ Callaghan; Paula Morgan; Rhonda Cobham-Sander; Barbara Lalla; Vijay Maharaj; Jennifer Rahim; Lawrence Scott; Bhoendradatt Tewarie and Sandra Pouchet Paquet.
- TABLE OF CONTENTS
- SECTION ONE: Circuits of Self-Refashioning
- 1. ‘THE HISTORY THAT HAD MADE ME’: The Making and Self-Making of V.S. Naipaul
- 2. NAIPAUL’S LEGACY: Made in the West Indies – for Export
- 3. CONSORTING WITH KALI: Migration and Identity in Naipaul’s ‘One Out of Many’
- 4. CONSUMING THE SELF:V.S. Naipaul, C.L.R. James and A Way in the World
- SECTION TWO: Form Matters
- 5. THE CONFESSIONAL ELEMENT IN NAIPAUL’S FICTION
- 6. SIGNIFYING NOTHING: Writing about Not Writing in The Mystic Masseur
- 7. KEEPING AN EYE ON NAIPAUL: Naipaul and the Play of the Visual
- 8. A MALA IN OBEISANCE: Hinduism in Selected Texts by V.S. Naipaul
- 9. THE SHADOW OF HANUMAN: V.S. Naipaul and the ‘Unhomely’ House of Fiction
- SECTION THREE: Rethinking Naipaul on the Thresholds of History and New Horizons
- 10. V.S. NAIPAUL ANDTHE INTERIOR EXPEDITIONS: ‘It is Impossible to Make a Step Without the Indians’
- 11. THE NOVELIST AND HISTORY – PLEASURES AND PROBLEMS: V.S. Naipaul’s The Loss of El Dorado – A History, The Enigma of Arrival – A Novel, and A Way in the World – A Sequence
- 12. V.S. NAIPAUL AS CRITICAL THINKER
- 13. NAIPAUL’S SENSE OF HISTORY