Trim: 6⅜ x 9½
978-0-7391-5114-3 • Hardback • November 2011 • $114.00 • (£88.00)
Julie Nack Ngue is assistant professor of French (teaching) at the University of Southern California. She is a contributor to journals such as Wagadu: Journal of Transnational Women’s and Gender Studies and to the book collection Emergent Perspectives on Ken Bugul: From Alternative Choices to Oppositional Practices (Jeanne-Sarah de Larquier and Ada Uzoamaka Azodo, eds, 2009).
Chapter 1: “Staring Back”: Visible Difference, Staring, and Uncertain Legibility in Marie Chauvet’s Amour and Myriam Warner-Vieyra’s Juletane
Chapter 2: The Body Composite: Testimony and the Problematic of Integral Healing in Maryse Condé’s Heremakhonon and Ken Bugul’s Le Baobab fou
Chapter 3: Towards a New Aesthetic of the Global: Grotesque Bodies, Circulation, and Haunting in Fama Diagne Sène’s Le Chant des ténèbres and Ken Bugul’s La Folie et la Mort
Chapter 4: Against Quarantine: Foreign Bodies in Excess in Fatou Diome’s Le Ventre de l’Atlantique and Bessora’s 53 cm
Epilogue: In Guise of a Conclusion
Nack Ngue’s study of eight novels by Francophone women, spanning 1968–2003, enriches both postcolonial and disability studies by effectively challenging a number of theoretical, geographical, and phenomenological divides. . . .Brilliantly paired novels and a rich progression of analyses scaffold broad scope without undermining depth. . . .Themethodology and structure of Critical Conditions reckon with deeply ingrained hierarchies and patterns of exclusion—historical, linguistic, and theoretical—in order to imagine solidarity between apparently disparate subjects and to reach for a transnational feminist disability politics.
— French Review
With Nack Ngue’s book, disability studies makes a belated entry into Francophone postcolonial feminist studies. This productive angle of approach, coupled with Nack Ngue’s knowledge of African cultural practices, allow her to provide new and sophisticated insights on classic and more recent texts by African and Caribbean women writers. Each chapter probes select texts through the lens of theorized concepts such as the stare, the impossible cure, the grotesque body, and the foreign body. This book makes a significant contribution to the fields of disability, Francophone, and feminist studies.
— Anne Donadey, professor of French and women's studies, San Diego State University
Critical Conditions: Illness and Disability in Francophone African and Caribbean Women’s Writing is a remarkable new development in interdisciplinary studies. It represents a welcome and much-needed investigation that imports the preoccupations of disability studies into the postcolonial and applies postcolonial methodologies in disability studies. In the process, and this is where this book is most exciting, it carves out in inaugural fashion the significant zone of commonalities between these two seemingly disparate fields.
— Lydie Moudileno, professor of French and Francophone studies, University of Pennsylvania