Traumatic Unrepresentability of Colonial Perpetrators in E.M Foster's A Passage to India and Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness
Alaa Kayed Abu-Rumman, Deema Ammari

Colonial trauma is usually associated with victims from colonized nations, who witness terrifying prolonged experiences in the colonies at the hands of imperial rulers. However, this study's main concern is the trauma from which some colonizers suffer as a devastating repercussion of colonialism. It will be analysed in the light of the colonizer's willingness to participate in or to implement the colonial agenda. The key spark that ignites and drives the colonizer‘s trauma, and the touchstone with which the effect and the severity of trauma will be measured in this research is the colonizer's willingness to be exploitative or to perpetrate criminal or evil acts. As a postcolonial psychoanalytic paper, the basic focalization will be on the trauma of the colonizer as an oppressor and the way the trauma is represented in colonial novels, that is, novels written in the colonial era, employing trauma theory as well as postcolonial criticism. The research will prove that the contradiction between the colonizer's actions and his/her moral code as the principal cause of the perpetrator's trauma. It also will highlight the post-traumatic symptoms of trauma and the possibility of recovery. Most importantly, this analytic work aims to attach the aporetic unspeakable traumatic representation to the concept of power, showing how unrepresentable traumas are employed in colonial texts in order not to expose the Empire or deface its image; referring to seminal postcolonial theorists as well as to empirical researches for justification. The chosen novels for discussion are E. M. Forster's A Passage to India and Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijll.v10n1a6