Spivak, Gayatri C.

Spivak, Gayatri C.

Bio: (1942-) Indian-American literary critic and gender theorist. Gayatri Spivak was born in India, while that country was still a colony, and she completed her doctoral studies in comparative literature at Cornell University. Spivak taught at Columbia University. Her study of literature, feminism, and colonialism was most influenced by the deconstructivism of Jacques Derrida and Marxist theory. In her works, she strives to break the hegemonic practice by which Western thought justified and rationalized European colonization, exploitation, and domination. She also criticizes how Western feminists portrayed the position of women in "third world" countries. Spivak deconstructed nineteenth-century English literature and showed that this literature justified colonial rule by claiming that England was the bearer of civilization and progress. Spivak used her own experience to provide a new perspective on issues of colonialism and racism, gender and sexuality, capitalism and class relations, culture and religion.


Main works

In Other Worlds: Essays in Cultural Politics (1987);

Marxism and the Interpretation of Culture (1988);

The Post-Colonial Critic (1990);

A Critique of Postcolonial Reason (1999);

Death of a Discipline (2003);

Other Asias (2008);

Nationalism and Imagination (2010);

An Aesthetic Education in the Era of Globalization (2012);

Can the Subaltern Speak? (2021).

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