African Journal of
History and Culture

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Hist. Cult.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6672
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJHC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 170


The formation of a hybrid identity in Tsitsi Dangarembga’s Nervous Conditions

  Peiman Amanolahi Baharvand1* and Bahman Zarrinjooee2        
  1Islamic Azad University, Boroujerd Branch, Iran. 2Department of English Language and Literature, Islamic Azad University, Boroujerd Branch, Iran.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 30 January 2012
  •  Published: 30 April 2012



Colonization was one of the bitterest phenomena during the nineteenth and the first half of the twentieth century. Imperial powers colonized some particular territories and plundered their capital. Beside economic damages, the colonizers obliterated local cultures of their colonies and imposed new ideologies on native people. Western cultural hegemony resulted in the formation of a new hybrid identity in the colonized natives. This article investigates Tsitsi Dangarembga's Nervous Conditions (1988) through a postcolonial approach. Nervous Conditions relate the double suffering of females in Southern Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe, a former colony of Britain. Rhodesia was a settler colony where the whites’ minority deposed local rulers late in the nineteenth century and began to administer the territory. The main discussion of this paper consists of two sections. The first part analyses gender discrimination as a great obstacle for women in the colonized Rhodesia, and the second part deals with racial discrimination practiced by colonizers, as well as the identity crisis experienced by the natives. Since colonization is one of the consequences of imperialism and postcolonial literature examines its consequences, this article begins with a brief introduction regarding postcolonial literature and British imperialism followed by a short background of Rhodesia.


Key words: Nervous Conditions, postcolonial literature, imperialism, racial and gender discrimination, identity crisis.

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