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Title: Forests and ecocultural disequilibrium in two postcolonial novels from Cameroon and Singapore
Authors: Sankaran C 
Nkengasong J
Issue Date: Mar-2018
Citation: Sankaran C, Nkengasong J (2018-03). Forests and ecocultural disequilibrium in two postcolonial novels from Cameroon and Singapore. Journal of Commonwealth Literature 53 (1) : 43-60. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: � The Author(s) 2016. Forests have always had a very special resonance with humans, one which is evidenced in the ways they are depicted in literatures and art throughout human civilization. This study attempts to look at the ways in which two contemporary authors, one Cameroonian and the other Singaporean, depict the forest in their novels. In both Linus Asong's Crown of Thorns and Meira Chand's A Different Sky, the nature/culture binary is shown as primal. Both narratives underline the essential inhospitability of the forests for human habitation. However, Asong's narrative insists on the importance of ritual in negotiating this uninhabitable terrain and how, were the conduct of this ceremonial ritual to fail, the nebulous harmony between humans and this terrain will be irrevocably broken. Chand's text, set in Second World War Singapore, reveals how, when the cultural terrain is rendered inhospitable to man due to conquest and human brutality, the forest appears as a refuge. However, this is misleading, for the essential disequilibrium between nature and culture is too deep to be overridden or resolved.
Source Title: Journal of Commonwealth Literature
ISSN: 0021-9894
DOI: 10.1177/0021989416652447
Appears in Collections:Staff Publications

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