In the spirit of reconciliation: migrating spirits and Australian postcolonial multiculturalism in Hoa Pham's Vixen

Carniel, Jessica (2013) In the spirit of reconciliation: migrating spirits and Australian postcolonial multiculturalism in Hoa Pham's Vixen. In: The ghostly and the ghosted in literature and film: spectral identities. University of Delaware Press, Newark, DE. United States, pp. 75-89. ISBN 978-161149-452-5

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Abstract

There are three key encounters of concern in this chapter that can be roughly categorised as the colonial encounter, the multicultural encounter and the postcolonial encounter. The colonial encounter occurs between the Vietnamese fox fairy and the French vampire. As a critique on the effects of French colonisation on Vietnam, the colonial encounter suggests that colonial powers can be parasitic and so weaken the political and cultural climate of a nation. In the multicultural encounter between the Vietnamese and Chinese fox fairies, Hoa Pham [in Pham's novel, Vixen] explores the possibility of intercultural dialogue within the multicultural state, emphasising the importance of migrant pasts in creating and enriching understandings of Australia as multicultural. Finally, the postcolonial encounters that occur between the fox fairies and the ningaui are used to imagine the political and cultural possibilities of conversations between multicultural and indigenous subjects in postcolonial and multicultural Australia. The shared experience of colonialism by the Vietnamese fox fairy and the ningaui in particular opens up an even more interesting transnational dialogue that, I argue, gestures towards a form of what Anthony Appiah calls 'rooted cosmopolitanism'. These various mythical creatures are utilised by Pham as a means of exploring historical experiences and imagining the possibilities of new intercultural interactions and negotiations.


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Item Type: Book Chapter (Commonwealth Reporting Category B)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Accepted version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Arts - School of Humanities and Communication
Date Deposited: 21 Feb 2014 03:00
Last Modified: 10 May 2017 04:09
Uncontrolled Keywords: Australian literature; immigration; postcolonialism; Asian Australian; ghosts; identity; race; ethnicity
Fields of Research : 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200205 Culture, Gender, Sexuality
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200209 Multicultural, Intercultural and Cross-cultural Studies
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2005 Literary Studies > 200502 Australian Literature (excl. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Literature)
21 History and Archaeology > 2103 Historical Studies > 210303 Australian History (excl. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander History)
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2002 Cultural Studies > 200211 Postcolonial Studies
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 95 Cultural Understanding > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australia's Past
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/24515

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