Nationalism and the Imagination by Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak has being the hardest text I have read during my theory class at Sydney College of the Arts in 2014. My task was to read and explain the text to my theory class and my lecturer Dr Adam Geczy in 8 minutes as a YouTube video. This was an almost impossible task because Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination is a small book of 75 pages and at Sydney College of the Arts’s library we are only able to borrow the book for 2 hours. I later found the book online as a pdf file. I have decided to leave my video presentation on YouTube to help some lost and desperate sole searching for the meaning of Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination, before contemplating on killing your self like me!
The video is entitled Nationalism and the Imagination by Spivak, user cecywk. The video is a condense analysis of Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination where Nationalism, Subaltern and ...view middle of the document...
Spivak is heavily criticised for her difficult style of writing both by Edward Said – literary theorist who helped found postcolonialism and Terry Eagleton also a literary theorist. People who read Spivak for the first time, like ME, can find her language complex and her style difficult to understand.
But what is even more difficult to understand is that this complex style of writing is so above and beyond complexity that the subaltern people she is talking about will never have a chance to even begin to understand what she writes.
During the course of understanding Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination, I had to look at other texts to begin to comprehend the purpose of Spivak’s talk on nationalism, Indian sovereignty, marginalized women, subaltern, comparative literatures oral formulaic, postcolonialism, etc. One of the best texts I came across was an e-book by Stephen Morton entitled Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak. It was first published in 2003 by Routledge and you can find it online as a pdf file.
Morton analysis several of Spivak’s works and then he explains in an uncomplicated manner the reasons for Spivak’s comments and her writing in general. Although Morton does not directly comment on Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination you will be able to understand Nationalism and the Imagination because Spivak draws from previous works that Morton includes in his e-book Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak.
Another way of understanding Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination is by reading the book reviews on the book. There are several book reviews on Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination online or you can find it through your university’s library. I was using ProQuest to find articles on Spivak’s Nationalism and the Imagination.
Last but not least, I watched several videos by Dr Jason J Campbell, user drjasonjcampbell. He was great, easy to understand and he includes notes with all his videos that you can download if you wish. What I liked the most about Dr Campbell was that he actually tells you what you need to know if you are reading Spivak for the first time. He uses Ghetto philosophy (plain English, easy to understand) as he calls it, to explain the complex thoughts of Spivak.