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Humanities 2015, 4(2), 250-265; doi:10.3390/h4020250

Decolonizing Trauma Theory: Retrospect and Prospects

Department of English Language and Culture, Faculty of Arts, University of Groningen, Oude Kijk in 't Jatstraat 26, 9712 EK Groningen, The Netherlands
Academic Editor: Sonya Andermahr
Received: 13 May 2015 / Revised: 11 June 2015 / Accepted: 17 June 2015 / Published: 23 June 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Decolonizing Trauma Studies: Trauma and Postcolonialism)
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Abstract

Decolonizing trauma theory has been a major project in postcolonial literary scholarship ever since its first sustained engagements with trauma theory. Since then, trauma theory and postcolonial literary studies have been uneasy bedfellows, and the time has now come to take stock of what remains in postcolonial trauma studies from the original formulations of trauma theory, and see which further steps must be envisaged in order to reach the ideal of a truly decolonized trauma theory today. To this end, this article presents a detailed overview of the short history and the present situation of the trajectory of decolonizing trauma theory for postcolonial studies, clarifying the various re-routings that have so far taken place, and delineating the present state of the project, as well as the need for further developments towards an increased expansion and inclusiveness of the theory. I argue that openness to non-Western belief systems and their rituals and ceremonies in the engagement with trauma is needed in order to achieve the remaining major objectives of the long-standing project of decolonizing trauma theory. View Full-Text
Keywords: trauma theory; postcolonial scholarship; literary criticism; postcolonial trauma; Freudian psychoanalysis; resilience; spirituality trauma theory; postcolonial scholarship; literary criticism; postcolonial trauma; Freudian psychoanalysis; resilience; spirituality
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Visser, I. Decolonizing Trauma Theory: Retrospect and Prospects. Humanities 2015, 4, 250-265.

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