This article examines the poetic and visual representations of the novel The One Facing Us by Ronit Matalon via reading the famous novella of Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness. The importance and originality of The One Facing Us lie in the development of a representational language, and hence of original and daring coping mechanisms that define identities within a post-colonial situation that has residual colonial aspects.

Matalon links an investigation into earlier colonial or post-colonial journeys and a search for the "truth of lineage" via the tale of Esther's journey. The truth of lineage is inseparably intertwined with colonial and post-colonial situations. Matalon uses the art of photography for which light is essential, inserting photographs into the narrative as a way of struggling against physical, emotional, and ideological blindness about a space tainted by oppressive and racist ideology as well as blindness to the outcomes of men's personally and politically motivated actions.

Home is created from a memoir and constructed as a collection of visual and lexical images that combine to create complex arabesques of identity with varied and fragile constituents. Language is key in the establishment of this fragile entity, alongside visual art. Hebrew language, despite the definitive rejection of its exclusivity here, is an inseparable part of that nonterritorial home.


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pp. 340-367
Launched on MUSE
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