Literature and Dissidence under Direct Provision: Melatu Okorie and Ifedinma Dimbo
Martín-Ruiz offers a critical analysis of two literary narratives about Direct Provision: ‘Shackles’ by Melatu Okorie, and ‘Grafton Street of Dublin’ by Ifedinma Dimbo. Both Okorie and Dimbo are former asylum seekers now living in Ireland. Through the literary analysis of these two short stories, the political agency of asylum seekers against the racial and racist immigration policies of the Irish Republic is examined. Martín-Ruiz focuses on certain themes which reflect crucial aspects of life in Direct Provision: the relationship of asylum seekers with their surroundings; the distorted perception of time; their enforced poverty; and a state of constant surveillance. Despite similarities between the realities represented in both stories, the outcome of each ranges from disobedience to non-compliant acceptance of sanctioned representations of ‘good’ refugees.
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