The first-person plural in Hanif Kureishi's essays

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The first-person plural in Hanif Kureishi's essays. / Gunning, Dave.

In: The Journal of Commonwealth Literature, Vol. 50, No. 2, 01.06.2015, p. 133-149.

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@article{0fc984390c4841b3ae8c77db8dc9890e,
title = "The first-person plural in Hanif Kureishi's essays",
abstract = "In this discussion I examine the significance of the first-person plural in selections from Hanif Kureishi{\textquoteright}s Collected Essays (2011). I identify two distinct ways in which it is employed, during two distinct periods of his writing. In his essays of the late 1980s Kureishi uses {\textquoteleft}we{\textquoteright} only rarely, and with notable care, always signalling for whom else he might be attempting to speak. In his essays about {\textquoteleft}fundamentalism{\textquoteright}, however, especially those written after the London bombings of July 2005, his use of the first-person plural functions to interpellate the reader in a way not seen in the earlier writing. I argue that the rhetoric of defending liberalism which dominates this later writing can therefore be read as sacrificing a liberal aesthetic which enacts, rather than insists upon, openness and tolerance. The potential of the meditative literary essay as a form which might embody such a liberal aesthetic especially effectively may thereby be lost.",
author = "Dave Gunning",
year = "2015",
month = jun,
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/0021989414554631",
language = "English",
volume = "50",
pages = "133--149",
journal = "The Journal of Commonwealth Literature",
issn = "0021-9894",
publisher = "SAGE Publications",
number = "2",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - The first-person plural in Hanif Kureishi's essays

AU - Gunning, Dave

PY - 2015/6/1

Y1 - 2015/6/1

N2 - In this discussion I examine the significance of the first-person plural in selections from Hanif Kureishi’s Collected Essays (2011). I identify two distinct ways in which it is employed, during two distinct periods of his writing. In his essays of the late 1980s Kureishi uses ‘we’ only rarely, and with notable care, always signalling for whom else he might be attempting to speak. In his essays about ‘fundamentalism’, however, especially those written after the London bombings of July 2005, his use of the first-person plural functions to interpellate the reader in a way not seen in the earlier writing. I argue that the rhetoric of defending liberalism which dominates this later writing can therefore be read as sacrificing a liberal aesthetic which enacts, rather than insists upon, openness and tolerance. The potential of the meditative literary essay as a form which might embody such a liberal aesthetic especially effectively may thereby be lost.

AB - In this discussion I examine the significance of the first-person plural in selections from Hanif Kureishi’s Collected Essays (2011). I identify two distinct ways in which it is employed, during two distinct periods of his writing. In his essays of the late 1980s Kureishi uses ‘we’ only rarely, and with notable care, always signalling for whom else he might be attempting to speak. In his essays about ‘fundamentalism’, however, especially those written after the London bombings of July 2005, his use of the first-person plural functions to interpellate the reader in a way not seen in the earlier writing. I argue that the rhetoric of defending liberalism which dominates this later writing can therefore be read as sacrificing a liberal aesthetic which enacts, rather than insists upon, openness and tolerance. The potential of the meditative literary essay as a form which might embody such a liberal aesthetic especially effectively may thereby be lost.

U2 - 10.1177/0021989414554631

DO - 10.1177/0021989414554631

M3 - Article

VL - 50

SP - 133

EP - 149

JO - The Journal of Commonwealth Literature

JF - The Journal of Commonwealth Literature

SN - 0021-9894

IS - 2

ER -