Postcolonialism: Dialectic of Autonomy and Determinism
As we have seen, thought or philosophical discourse has as much determinate effect on the literary as does the materiality of production. In this chapter, I track the contours of the discourse on autonomy in African literature and culture in order to lay the groundwork for establishing the connections between literary criticism and editorial criticism as a relation of autonomy and determinism. It is worth pointing out that academics such as Abiola Irele and Simon Gikandi are the empirical connections between the practice of literary criticism and editorial criticism precisely because of their role as publishers’ readers. This shows how wrong we would be to pretend that literary scholarship is happening entirely outside the field of literary production rather than from certain determinate positions to, or within, it. Any engagement with an editor or publisher is an indirect engagement with a critic or scholar, whose specialist opinion the editor mostly takes into consideration before accepting or rejecting a manuscript or recommending a revision.