Postcolonial Reading of a Colonial Text

Majed hamed Aladaylah


The discussion and analysis focuses on the ways colonialist discourse, in this case Maugham’s short story Footbrint in the jungle, positioned the colonized natives into European colonialist socio-cultural hierarchy. This study examines Maugham's depictions of non-white communities - Malay, Chinese and Indian. Hence, we look at how this colonialist writer reinforced and spread the idea of physical and social differences between the Europeans and the non-European races, rendering the latter an inferior position to the former. In this section we see that the distinction made was not only rooted in physically grounds but culturally and socially as well, which go hand in hand with Edward Said’s notion of Orientalism.

The analysis shows that Maugham’s narrative represents the Eastern social and cultural practices in an unpalatable manner. For example, the geography and landscape of the colonized territory is sketched as evil, savage, dark, et cetera. We see the forest in Maugham’s The Footprinst in the Jungle as a place where everything becomes dangerous: people lose their sanity; loves takes on the face of violence and hatred.

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English Language Teaching       ISSN 1916-4742 (Print)   ISSN  1916-4750 (Online)

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