Abstract

Abstract:

This article reads In the Falling Snow (2009) as an examination of Anglo-centric multicultural diaspora that incorporates new European migration. The reading is framed by Michael Rothberg's theory of multidirectional memory, which allows for a rendering of English subjectivity that encounters and draws from multiple transcultural referents. Through the problematic figure of Keith, Caryl Phillips' novel explores the competing spheres of influence, migratory and otherwise, that lead to contemporary articulations of Englishness. Furthermore, the article posits that In the Falling Snow recasts familiar diasporic tropes and expands the limits of cultural memory in critically unfamiliar and even vitally post-racial ways. The narrative achieves this in part by including Eastern European migrants, whose experiences of England are circumscribed by a narrow view of Englishness. The novel therefore indexes England's vexed contemporary relationship with multiculturalism while simultaneously foregrounding the deeply rooted interconnectivity between the country and its migrant communities. By reading the novel through the lens of multidirectional memory, the article identifies a multidirectional narrative consciousness that allows for complex renderings of iterations of Englishness.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1920-1222
Print ISSN
0004-1327
Pages
pp. 209-227
Launched on MUSE
2017-09-06
Open Access
No
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