Writing Back by The Other: Breaking from The Hegemony Imposed


  • Shreya Mehta Research Scholar Centre for Linguistics Jawaharlal Nehru University New Delhi, India




Achebe, Colonialism, Derrida, Igbo.


One’s first language is said to play a key role in the maintenance of one’s cultural and ethnic identity. We express our folktales, myths, proverbs and the very history of our culture and heritage in the language. It could have perhaps also been one of the reasons that the imperial powers tried to hallmark the native languages with their own and employ the use of language as a key tool to impose their power and control over the colonised. There seemed two ways for the natives to fight back- one being of rejection and the other of subversion. Then of course there was the third option-to write back in the language of the Coloniser with the motive to reach out and appeal to the masses across the globe about their plight. The challenge, however, was to keep their essence, their identity alive in the language of majority.


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Achebe, Chinua. Things Fall Apart. William Heinemann Ltd, 1971.
Bhabha, Homi. K. Nation and Narration. Routledge, 1994.
Derrida, Jacques. Monolingualism of the Other. Patrick Mensah. Stanford University Press, 1996
Kristeva, Julia. Language the Unknown: An Initiation into Linguistics. Columbia University Press, 1989.
Menon, Anand. A Post-Colonial Insight To Chinua Achebe’s African Trilogy. Bridge Center, 2015, pp. 24. http://www.euacademic.org/BookUpload/20.pdf (26-02-2020, 11:22)
Said, Edward. Culture and Imperialism. Vintage Books, 1994.
Said, Edward. Orientalism. Vintage Books, 1979.




How to Cite

Mehta, S. (2020). Writing Back by The Other: Breaking from The Hegemony Imposed. SMART MOVES JOURNAL IJELLH , 8(3), 16. https://doi.org/10.24113/ijellh.v8i3.10454