Oppressive Silence: J. M. Coetzee’s Foe and the Politics of Canonisation

  • Derek Attridge


How does it come about that a fictional work, or an oeuvre, is heard within a literary and cultural tradition? What does it mean for a novel to claim canonic status, or for critics to make such a claim on its behalf? What kinds of voicing and silencing are involved in this process, and how do they relate to the wider operations of voicing and silencing that characterise — and in some degree constitute — our cultural and political practices? These are some of the troublesome questions raised, internally and externally, by J. M. Coetzee’s fifth novel, Foe.


Critical Perspective Black Smoke Dominant Discourse Dominant Language Master Narrative 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Derek Attridge

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