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Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak - World Systems & the Creole - Narrative 14:1 Narrative 14.1 (2006) 102-112


I am delighted to have been asked to respond to this important and exciting paper. I want to sketch out the broad points of solidarity between Professor Dimock and myself and then point to some suggestions for the kind of future work that can arise out of so rich an undertaking.

First I would like to express solidarity vis-à-vis Franco Moretti: "I would like," Professor Dimock writes, "to caution against what strikes me as [Moretti's] over-commitment to general laws, to global postulates operating at some remove from the phenomenal world of particular texts." This resonates with what I wrote in Death of A Discipline, although I was, admittedly, a little stronger: "The worlds systems theorists upon whom Moretti relies . . . are . . . useless for literary study—that must depend on texture" (108).1 Thanks to initiatives such as Professor Dimock's, we can begin to emphasize the altogether obvious point: in order to do distant reading one must be an excellent close reader, as both Wai Chee Dimock and Fredric Jameson make abundantly clear.

I also find interesting Professor Dimock's idea that "the epic is a cross-over phenomenon." I would like to go on record as joining in this, beyond simply noting the kind of intertextuality where a modern text clearly alludes to an ancient one, "encoding the temporal within the lexical," in Professor Dimock's lovely words. I suggested that Maryse Condé's slim novel Heremakhonon deploys epic time in the very management of narrative time itself: [End Page 102]

Clearly, with the disappearance of robust orality, the epic tendency could not just shrivel. Rather than call deliberately large-scale narrative undertakings "epic" by a species of descriptive metaphor of size and complexity—we could call this training of memory by the impersonal heterogeneity of "historical " times a displacement of epic play. . . . Heremakhonon, with its rich epic dimension—loosely named "Africa," "Islam," "decolonization," and the like (unitary names suppressing the plural epic as monoculture does biodiversity)—can then open the door closed by Aristotle when he compared the slim tragedy to the massive performative epic.22 It is a large and generic door, closed when history, tied to the self-determination of the individual, began to be written on a gradual incomprehension of the miraculous mnemic scripting of orality. . . . To say that the timing of the text is hybrid is to learn to read its epic dimension and witness this acknowledgement.
(Staging 91–92)

Professor Dimock does not suggest, as do I, that in such use of narrative time, literature touches orature; but her argument can clearly take it on board.

For her distant reading, Professor Dimock turns to anthropology as a model. I do of course most heartily endorse this move. Here I would like to elaborate a little and again, I feel confident that Professor Dimock's approach can take this on. I should mention that I have discussed this part of my response with Professor Rosalind Morris.

It is not really "literary anthropology" that Professor Dimock uses as her model.

(My response was composed with reference to an earlier version of Professor Dimock's essay. The phrase "literary anthropology" was used in its initial paragraphs: "I was in Beijing a few weeks ago," she had then started,

and was struck by a phrase that seemed to come up again and again even in the handful of articles that I happened to be reading: "literary anthropology." This is not a phrase we use very much in this country; in fact, with the exception of Wolfgang Iser, I don't recall seeing it anywhere else. I (would?) like to borrow it as a preface to this talk—as a summary and apology for the very immodest claim that I seem to be making: namely, that in order to think about the epic and the novel in conjunction, we need an analytic frame that has to be measured in terms of continents, an analytic frame that reflects, not the life of a single nation, and not the life of a single language, but something like the life of the species as a whole, in all its environments, all its habitats across the planet.

Set and Subset

"Anthropology" is probably the right word for this kind of undertaking. Of course, as we know, the discipline has its own internal problems, not least of all being its long history of entanglement with colonialism and indeed racism of [End Page 103] various sorts. But, as a discipline adjacent to and yet not reducible to literary history, it does serve as an interesting heuristic partner. One of the most important differences, it seems to me, is that anthropology is, by and large, an empirical discipline, and brings with it a self-consciousness about what we might call the conditions of its empiricism: the size of the sampling population, the scope of the claim that flows from it, and the extent to which it can be said to constitute a unit of analysis. It is this self-consciousness that allows anthropology to operate on two alternating and complementary registers, bouncing one off against the other: one macro and the other micro, one, much larger than the scale of literary history, and the other, much smaller. The smaller scale is obvious enough: anthropology is a study of local knowledge, it is dedicated to a self-contained population, a subset of human beings. But this subset matters, I think it is fair to say, because it is a subset, because there is a larger set to which it belongs. This larger set—answering to the name of the "human"—is the implicit but also indispensable ground of anthropology. It becomes a discipline at all because this larger set is a meaningful set, a meaningful unit of analysis. And the database that goes with it is coextensive with the life of the species as a whole; it extends to every part of the planet where human beings happen to be. It is this relation between set and subset—and the coextension of the former with the bounds of the human—that I'd like to map onto our own discipline. There is no reason why literary history should not be construed as being parallel to anthropology in this particular sense: committed both to a local population and to an unlocal idea of species membership. There is no reason, in fact, why it should not work as a switch mechanism between these two, between a subset of human expression, and a species-wide definition of the set. The term that I'd like to propose for this switch mechanism is the term "genre."

I have kept my earlier comments because, although Professor Dimock has now jettisoned literary anthropology and taken on fractal geometry to explicate Lévi-Strauss on kinship, her presuppositions about the relationship of literature to culture remain unchanged.)

"Literary anthropology" is the genre of anthropology that deploys autobiography powerfully—Lévi-Strauss on the Nambikwara, Mick Taussig in his various writings, James Clifford, Kiran Narayan.33 They are rather far from claiming the species as set. That gesture would belong more to what is today called physical anthropology, whose borders mingle with genetics. This too is not Dimock's terrain. It seems to us that Professor Dimock is using masterfully what Kant, in the opening of his Anthropology from A Pragmatic View, calls fiction as expression of the cultural imagination (6). Here, too, I declare alliance. When I began my postcolonial journey with "Three Women's Texts and A Critique of Imperialism," written in the early eighties, I struck out for literature as "cultural self-representation" (243 and passim).

Professor Dimock's insistence on close reading is faithful to Kant. In an appendix to The Critique of Pure Reason on the regulative use of the ideas of pure reason, Kant speaks of the making sense-perceptible of three basic ideas of conceptualizing logic. When doing so, Kant says, the investigating subject, the philosopher, takes the [End Page 104] concept as a perspective, as on a hill, and sees a horizon, as a circle. The subject continues to develop the concept and finds more and more circles appear, newer horizons. When the case won't fit a circle, the seeker pushes the figure until it becomes an ellipse; and a parabola, and perhaps all the figures of geometry as a circle bent out of shape (Kant doesn't list them), until he (always a he in Kant, of course) comes upon the asymptote, two parallel lines running side by side, meeting only at infinity. You never get to empirical particularity when you are making logic palpable, says Kant, for the entire exercise is still only analogical (600–01).

A merely reasonable system, such as the kind of analogical classification envisaged by distant reading, in other words, will not yield the singular.

Yet another point of entry for me is Virgil in the novels of J. M. Coetzee. Indeed, Virgil is in Disgrace as well, along with King Lear and Kafka's The Trial.4

I will now make a tiny suggestion that will, at first, seem contrary to Dimock's conclusions. But in fact, it will lead to further work that can only secure her general argument, her claims to the world.

I would suggest that Latin is not a "foreign" language to Dante. When Dante wrote De vulgari eloquentia in Latin,45 he referred to it as the language with a grammar. All the various speeches that together make up "Italian," are simply vulgar speech—Latin Creole, as it were—mutatis mutandis in the spirit of Proust's Marcel:

those French words which we are so proud of pronouncing accurately are themselves only "howlers" made by Gaulish lips which mispronounced Latin or Saxon . . . . The corrupt pronunciation whereby our ancestors made Latin and Saxon words undergo lasting mutilations which in due course became the august law-givers of our grammar books . . ..
(Sodom 184, Budding 448–49)

In the Latin Middle Ages, even Provençal is not a foreign language, but another Latin Creole. Out of all the "Italian" Creoles, Dante chooses curial Florentine, the most elegant version of his beloved Tuscan, as the one most worthy. It is not too far-fetched to say that, for Dante, Latin is sanskrt (refined)—and vulgar speech—all those "Italians"—is prakrt (natural). If we look at playwrights such as Bhāsa (fl. 3rd century A.D.) or Kālidāsa (fl. 5th century A.D.), we find them using Sanskrt and at least three Prakrts (the vulgar eloquence out of which the languages of North India consolidated themselves, my mother tongue Bengali in the late eleventh century). I would therefore like to place this within a more general phenomenon of creolity rather than take Aristotle's casual mention of foreign words as my model. (Indeed, the passage on the capacity of the epic to extend its own bulk has nothing to do with foreign words and large kinship structures at all.) Aristotle was not keen on the epic, as the close of the Poetics will show. And in translations other than Else's, in the Loeb bilingual edition, for example, γλοττου is translated "rare words," rather than "foreign" (94–95, 84–85). My own inclination would be to follow the "wordy" authorized by the Greek-English Lexicon. The Poetics are as much a creative writing lesson as it is literary theory. Aristotle is cautioning future writers of tragedy against ponderous language.5 The epic can get away with heavy language. It is a narrative [End Page 105] form. Be sure not to use such stuff in tragedy, drama with a socially therapeutic mission. I think it is not a good idea to draw a foreign language rule for works that are "epic" in a sense rather far from Aristotle's day. On the other hand, creolity, as I have sketched it above, is about the delexicalization of the foreign. (To lexicalize is to separate a linguistic item from its appropriate grammatical system into the conventions of another grammar.) It will yield us a history and a world.

(Professor Dimock was conscientious enough to look up two specialist books on Dante, Latin, and Italian, in response to my gentle nudge. I am grateful to her for this. My point, however, was not to check up on scholarship, especially from the late fifties, when some of the allocthonic metropolitan concepts I carry around had not yet reared their teratological heads. The point is to imagine a time when the name "Italian" is shaky—to imagine a different mindset—dare I say episteme? I cite my postscript and remind the reader that, in my initial response, this is why I had quoted Proust, to be helped along in the task of imagining. I quote myself quoting Rilke, in a piece where I wrote of the Indic episteme (structure of feeling?) that gives us avatār, as not grasped by experts.6

It is within this general uneven unanticipatable possibility of avatarana or descent—this cathexis by the ulterior, as it were, that the "lesser" god or goddess, when fixed in devotion, is as "great" as the greatest: ein jeder Engel ist schrecklich. How did Rilke know? Perhaps "culture" is semi-permeable by the imagination?

     Am I not cynical enough about Comparative Literature? Mea maxima culpa. I still go by Shelley's warning, always apposite: "We want the creative faculty to imagine that which we know" [29].)

Dimock's work invites us to look beyond Latin into the word "genre." The Indo-European cognates in Sanskrt yield us both gnosis and genesis, jnāna, jāti and jnāti, nation and kin. All these words are related to the word for knee, jānu, genoux, use of gender (another genre word) as rape, kneeing into forcible entry, to engender. This is what makes me a bit leery of the model of family: father, mother, competitive patricidal brothers, sisters emerging as support. No kinship system, alas, is composed only of cousins, as Dimock would have it. Yesterday I listened to my dear old friend Lord William Wallace of Saltire deliver to us his response to the question posed by the Catholic Conference of Bishops and the Archbishop's Conference of the Church of England: is there a "European" war? What we heard was a model of trusteeship, of protecting non-European peoples as they make the transition into modernity, not the white man's burden, Wallace insisted. This fraternocracy takes us on to the family tree, which Nietzsche and Foucault had revised. I feel such a strong bond with Professor Dimock's work that I would ask her to rethink family as creolity.

(Professor Dimock has loosened the concept of family a good deal in the second version. I am grateful for this, but I would ask her to give it up altogether. "Rhizome" is a good choice and, to see how one can leave family behind via the rhizome's dismantling of the root, I invoke creolity again. There is a short checklist in my postscript. The French postcolonials mentioned there go a long way with the rhizome, away from "the family of man."77 [End Page 106]

In order to get away from the family romance, Professor Dimock goes to fractal geometry. I am as suspicious of humanists metaphorizing the latest developments in science through their pseudo-popularizing descriptions as I am of nonspecialists offering Mesopotamia as evidence. It leads to pretentiousness in our students. Do we really need fractal geometry to tell us that "the loss of detail is almost always unwarranted?" I keep insisting on learning languages, the old access to literary detail, rather than analogizing from descriptions of fractal geometry or chaos theory. What warms the cockles of my oldfashioned heart is that Professor Dimock will not give up close reading, however far she fetches to justify it within the current rage for filing systems.)

I mentioned Kafka and Shakespeare, not just Virgil, in Coetzee. If we take creolity and intertextuality (rather than kinship connections and genre) as models that coexist with Dimock's major rethinking of the epic and the novel, we can welcome Ulysses and Finnegans Wake into the enclosure. In "Ethics and Politics in Tagore and Coetzee, and Certain Scenes of Teaching" (see note 3), I have suggested that you can even welcome Rabindranath Tagore.

Perhaps this expansion of Dimock's point of view, as expressed by me, already happens in her forthcoming book. I look forward to its appearance. For now, I will say that "The Law of Genre," the Derrida text from which Professor Dimock quotes, will allow this. The figure that Derrida offers, over against the border policing that he and Dimock repudiate, is "invagination," where a part insistently becomes bigger than the whole. In creolity one can find a persistent invagination that will make room for our alliance.

In conclusion, I offer a bit of an abject postscript for my word "planet." I made Jonathan Arac change his over-enthusiastic blurb for me as the proponent of "planetary comparative literature" to a description of me as trying to be a "planetary reader." Here I give my reasons.

I spoke of planetarity in an address to a Swiss organization—Stiftung-Dialogik—in 1997.88 They had been formed to give shelter to refugees from the Third Reich. In the mid-nineties they were changing to accommodate refugees from various countries of Asia and Africa, torn asunder by violence and poverty. To mark this change, they asked me to offer a keynote. I was asking them to change their mindset, not just their policy. And I recommended planetarity because "planet-thought opens up to embrace an inexhaustible taxonomy of such names including but not identical with animism as well as the spectral white mythology of post-rational science." By "planet-thought" I meant a mind-set that thought that we lived on, specifically, a planet. I continue to think that to be human is to be intended toward exteriority. And, if we can get to planet-feeling, the outside or other is indefinite. Therefore I wrote:

If we imagine ourselves as planetary subjects rather than global agents, planetary creatures rather than global entities, alterity remains underived from us, it is not our dialectical negation, it contains us as much as it flings us away—and thus to think of it is already to transgress, for, in spite of our forays into what we metaphorize, differently, as outer and inner space, what is above and beyond [End Page 107] our own reach is not continuous with us as it is not, indeed, specifically discontinuous. My efforts for the last decade tell me that, if we ask the kinds of questions you are asking, seriously, we must persistently educate ourselves into this peculiar mindset.
(Imperatives 46)

To explain: If we planet-think, planet-feel, our "other"—everything in the unbounded universe—cannot be the self-consolidating other, an other that is a neat and commensurate opposite of the self. I emphasize "education" in the passage above, and I mean specifically training the imagination. Gifted folks with well-developed imaginations can get to it on their own. The experimental musician Lorie Anderson, when asked why she chose to be artist-in-residence at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, put it this way recently: "I like the scale of space. I like thinking about human beings and what worms we are. We are really worms and specks. I find a certain comfort in that."

She has put it rather aggressively. That is not my intellectual style, but my point is close to hers. You see how very different it is from a sense of being the custodians of our very own planet, for god or for nature, although I have no objection to such a sense of accountability, where our own home is our other, as in self and world. But that is not the planetarity I was talking about.

Planetarity, then, is not quite a dimension, because it cannot authorize itself over against a self-consolidating other. In that mind-set, there is no choosing between cultures. It is the place of "unaccomodated man," to use Shakespeare's words, "a poor, bare forked animal."99

If I seem hesitant about claiming the planet, I also have a cautionary word about harnessing Mesopotamia. I insist that I share these precautions with Professor Dimock because I feel a strong alliance with her. As a modernist, I too feel the need to approach the medieval and ancient world. If I remind ourselves that a string quartet and a spider must not be conceptually related because they both have eight legs, it is because I too have indulged in making preposterous connections. As I have tried to point out in the cases of Aristotle and the epic, and Dante and Latin, people in different historical periods think differently, they inhabit different epistemes. We cannot take the English word "foreign" as a felicitous synonym for the word γλοττου spoken by Aristotle to his students and use it to construct a world-system. (There is evidence that Aristotle thought he was himself a "stranger" because he was from Stagira, whereas Plato was a citizen of Athens. How does "foreign" figure here?) We cannot read if we do not make a serious linguistic effort to enter the epistemic structures presupposed by a text. Aristotle and Dante are far enough from us, but Mesopotamia is quite another story. The responsibility of the comparativist entails a greater familiarity with the language(s) and patterns of thought of that remote theater, than our elation at finding "foreign" elements everywhere—that allows us to repeat what may be a bit of a literary-critical cliché—the epic as world-system.

Some years ago, the Metropolitan Museum in New York had an extraordinary exhibition on the "Art of the First Cities." The exquisite objects gave us a glimpse of a comparativism before the letter, a world system before our world. I remember [End Page 108] reading of an extraordinary linguistic phenomenon in that distant world: "[At the Old Babylonian Schools] the students were not simply learning the technique of calligraphy but were also studying Sumerian, a language that had long ceased to be spoken and that bore no resemblance to the Akkadian they spoke at home. . . . The language was long dead and was a typical 'nonmother tongue,' taught by old men to young boys who would hardly ever get to use it outside the school environment" (Aruz 455).

How would a simple idea of "foreign" be negotiated in this space?


When I proposed creolity rather than kinship as a model for comparativist practice to Professor Dimock, I was thinking of Dante and Latin. It was clear to me that, for a very long time, the idea of one normative language and many "natural" ones was a much more powerful idea than the accident of there being many languages. When the Arab translator translated Aristotle, he was not translating from a foreign language because, to earn the right to translate was for him to make the language of the original his own. Marx was catching the tail end of this idea in his injunction about how to learn a foreign language in "The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte" (147). I felt that it would be good if we thought of the great order of the literary as a kind of virtual and inaccessible normativity, and of our own methodological attempts as varieties of creole, testifying to their practical usefulness. Revising, I consulted the basic texts of the contemporary debate on creolity.10 The entire debate is worth contemplating. Here I will content myself with citing Édouard Glissant, the initiator of the movement. Glissant's word for what I am seeking to describe is "relation." To generalize this notion he writes, among a thousand provocative things, for example:

let us try to recapitulate the things we don't yet know, the things we have no current means of knowing, concerning all the singularities, all the trajectories, all the histories, all the denaturations, and all the syntheses that are at work or that have resulted from our confluences. How have cultures—Chinese or Basque, Indian or Inuit, Polynesian or Alpine—made their way to us, and how have we reached them . . . . No matter how many studies and references we accumulate (though it is our profession to carry out such things properly), we will never reach the end of such a volume; knowing this in advance makes it possible for us to dwell there. Not knowing this totality does not constitute a weakness. . . . Relation is open totality; totality would be relation at rest. Totality is virtual.
(153, 154, 171)

My affinity with Glissant's thinking should be immediately clear. Glissant's work is particularly useful as an antidote to the understandable but unfortunate comparativism that wants to begin with the "fact" that "literatures the whole world over were formed on the national model created and promoted by Germany at the end of the 18th century" (Casanova 78). Here too I concur with Édouard Glissant's wisdom, [End Page 109] warning non-Europeans from joining in this contrived collectivity: "if one is in too much of a hurry to join the concert, there is a risk of mistaking as autonomous participation something that is only some disguised leftover of old alienations;" he gives an astute account of the kind of comparativism the enthusiasts of world literature would require: "in order to 'comprehend' and thus to accept you, I have to bring your solidity to the ideal scale which provides me with themes for comparisons and, perhaps, judgments. I have to reduce" (120, 190). An unintended consequence of work such as Professor Dimock's can be to give support to such "interaction, out of which ghouls of totalitarian thinking might suddenly reemerge" (131). I hasten to add that I have a great deal of sympathy with Professor Casanova, from whom I cited that symptomatic sentiment about the originality of the German eighteenth century. I caution her simply because I have learned the hard way how dangerous it is to confuse the limits of one's knowledge with the limits of what can be known.

We cannot not want to tie up all the loose threads in any world. Yet today more than ever that desire must be curbed, for everything seems possible in the United States now. If we want to preserve the dignity of that strange adjective "comparative" in comparative literature, we will embrace creolity. Creolity assumes imperfection, even as it assures the survival of a rough future. In the creolization of the world's past Dimock and Spivak can hang out together. Join us.

Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak is Avalon Foundation Professor in the Humanities and Director of the Center for Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University. Her publications include In Other Worlds (1987), Outside in the Teaching Machine (1993), Toward a Critique of Postcolonial Reason (1999). Her translations include Jacques Derrida, Of Grammatology (1976); and many titles, short and long, by Mahasweta Devi, from 1981 to 2004. In press with Harvard is Red Thread.


1. See Aristotle, Poetics, 115–117.

2. For most of these writers, a look at their general bibliography will suffice. For a discussion of the travelogue element in Lévi-Strauss's treatment of the Nambikwara, see Jacques Derrida, Of Grammatology, translated by Spivak, 107–140.

3. For a discussion of intertextuality in Disgrace, see Spivak, "Ethics and Politics in Tagore, Coetzee, and Certain Scenes of Teaching."

4. De vulgari eloquentia is the title of an important essay by Dante Alighieri, written in Latin and initially meant to consist in four books, but aborted after the second. It was probably written in the years that preceded Dante's exile, between 1303 and 1305 (Wikipedia).

5. "Among the constraints on plot that Aristotle lists are the following. Note that they are all phrased negatively – i.e., as constraints. . . . All of these constraints are rooted in the fact that intersentence coherence in Indo-European languages is achieved primarily by tense" (A. L. Becker, Beyond Translation: Essays Toward A Modern Philology, 32–33; first emphasis mine). Here is an "anthropologist" who has spent his intellectual life upon the relationship between languages. Worth listening to as we comparativists move out on to what is, for us, and wrongly, uncharted seas.

6. And indeed, to be fair to the experts, they take the mindset for granted. When Pulgram (one of Professor Dimock's sources), writes: "[Dante's] prescription for the creation of a volgare illustre (so called of course not in the sense of 'vulgar' but only in opposition to learned Latin) . . . runs counter to what one would consider the normal formation of a literary standard language" (Pulgram 55), he is commenting on Dante's poetics of creolity, although he would be scandalized to be told so, which went counter to scientific linguistics. When he writes of "a new written language in Italy [around A.D. 800], which one can no longer call Latin, but at best Neo-Latin, or Italian" (411), or says that the stiff written Italian of the early nineteenth century was "another Classical Latin" (64), he is using that epistemic presupposition without theorizing it. What is over against the mother tongue is not a foreign [End Page 110] language but a learned language. As for Cecil Grayson, Professor Dimock's other source, his work on Leon Battista Alberti (1404–1472), conveys his sense of the culture/nature/culture relationship, as historically conceived, between Latin, "Italian," and Italian.

7. "The Family of Man (MoMA Exh. #569, January 24–May 8, 1955) was composed of 503 photographs grouped thematically around subjects pertinent to all cultures, such as love, children, and death. . . . The photographs included in the exhibition focused on the commonalities that bind people and cultures around the world and the exhibition served as an expression of humanism in the decade following World War II" ( "The professed aim of the exhibition was to mark 'essential oneness of mankind throughout the world.' During the time it was open, The Family of Man became the most popular exhibition in the history of photography" ( We cannot go back to that cold war "planetarity!"

8. See Imperatives to Re-Imagine the Planet/Imperative zur Neuerfindung des Planeten, 46.

9. The description of planetarity is quoted from Spivak, "Why Planet?: Intellectual Autobiography," delivered at the Gramsci Institute.

10. Jean Bernabé et al, Éloge de la créolité,; Maryse Condé and Madeleine Cottenet-Hage, eds. Penser la créolité; Édouard Glissant, Caribbean Discourse: Selected Essays; Glissant, Poetics of Relation. I am grateful to Brent Hayes Edward for his help.

Works Cited

Aristotle. Poetics. Translated by W. Hamilton Fyfe. Cambridge: Harvard Univ. Press, 1927.

Aruz, Joan and Ronald Wallenfels, eds. Art of the First Cities: the Third Millennium B.C. from the Mediterranean to the Indus. New Haven: Yale Univ. Press, 2003.

Bernabé, Jean et al. Éloge de la créolité. Translated by M. B. Taleb-Khyar. Paris: Gallimard, 1993.

Becker, A. L. Beyond Translation: Essays Toward A Modern Philology. Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, 1995.

Casanova, Pascale. "Literature As a World." New Left Review 31 (Jan-Feb 2005): 71–90.

Condé, Maryse and Madeleine Cottenet-Hage, eds. Penser la créolité. Paris: Karthala, 1995.

Derrida, Jacques. "The Law of Genre." Translated by Avital Ronell. Critical Inquiry 7.1 (1980): 55–81.b

———. Of Grammatology. Translated by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 1976.

Glissant, Édouard. Caribbean Discourse: Selected Essays. Translated by Michael Dash. Charlottesville: Univ. of Virginia Press, 1989.

———. Poetics of Relation. Translated by Betsy Wing. Ann Arbor: Univ. of Michigan Press, 2003.

Goetschel, Willi, ed. Imperatives to Re-Imagine the Planet/Imperative zur Neuerfindung des Planeten. Passagen: Vienna, 1999.

Grayson, Cecil. Leon Battista Alberti, La prima grammatica della lingua volgare: la Grammatichetta vaticana, Cod. vat. reg. lat. 1370; a cura di Cecil Grayson, Bologna : Commissione per i Testi di Lingua, 1964.

Kant, Immanuel. Anthropology from a Pragmatic Point of View. Translated by Victor Lyle Dowdell. Carbondale: Southern Illinois Univ. Press, 1996. [End Page 111]

———. A Critique of Pure Reason. Translated by Paul Guyer and Allen W. Wood. Cambridge: Cambridge Univ. Press, 1998.

Marx, Karl. Surveys From Exile. Translated by David Fernbach. New York: Vintage, 1973.

The Museum of Modern Art Web Site Staff. "The Family of Man." [Available Online]. [Cited July 2005]. Available from

The National Archives. "The Family of Man." [Available Online]. Learning Curve, The National Archives. [Cited July 2005]. Available from

Proust, Marcel. Sodom and Gomorrah: In Search of Lost Time. Translated by C.K. Scott Moncrieff, Terence Kilmartin, and D.J. Enright. Revised ed. New York: Random House, 1999. Vol. IV.

———. Within a Budding Grove: In Search of Lost Time. Translated by C.K. Scott Moncrieff, Terence Kilmartin, and D.J. Enright. Revised ed. New York: Random House, 1999. Vol. II.

Pulgram, Ernst. The Tongues of Italy: Prehistory and History. Cambridge: Harvard Univ. Press, 1958.

Steichen, Edward, curator. The Family of Man, photographic exhibition. New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1955.

Shelley, Percy Bysshe. "A Defence of Poetry." In Shelley's Critical Prose, edited by Bruce R. McElederry, Jr., 4–37. Lincoln: Univ. of Nebraska Press, 1967.

Spivak, Gayatri Chakravorty. Death of A Discipline. New York: Columbia Univ. Press, 2003.

———. "Ethics and Politics in Tagore, Coetzee, and Certain Scenes of Teaching." Diacritics 32.3–4 (Dec 2004): 17–31.

———. "Moving Devi." Cultural Critique 47 (Winter 2001): 120–163.

———."The Staging of Time in Heremakhonon." Cultural Studies 17.i (Jan 2003): 85–97.

———. "Three Women's Texts and A Critique of Imperialism." Critical Inquiry 12.1 (Autumn 1985): 243–261.

———. "Why Planet?: Intellectual Autobiography" Delivered at the Gramsci Institute (Trieste, Italy), Feb 18, 2005.

Wikipedia. "De vulgari eloquentia." [Available Online]. Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. [Cited July 2005]. Available from

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