23. Sticks and Stones

Three Nearly Unnamable Figures and a Review of Postcolonialism

  1. Robert DeMaria Jr.,
  2. Heesok Chang and
  3. Samantha Zacher
  1. Elaine K. Chang

Published Online: 10 JAN 2014

DOI: 10.1002/9781118827338.ch98

A Companion to British Literature

A Companion to British Literature

How to Cite

Chang, E. K. (2014) Sticks and Stones, in A Companion to British Literature (eds R. DeMaria, H. Chang and S. Zacher), John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118827338.ch98

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 10 JAN 2014
  2. Published Print: 3 FEB 2014

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470656044

Online ISBN: 9781118827338



  • Ariel;
  • Caliban;
  • colonialism;
  • copy;
  • mimic;
  • postcolonialism;
  • race;
  • repetition;
  • subaltern


If “postcolonialism” names anything, it might be a term that awkwardly stands in for the bad conscience or underside of traditional English literary study, its formative role in British imperialism, its Eurocentric notions of genuine artistry and original authorship, and its tendency to taxonomize that which cannot be readily taxonomized. This chapter addresses three major figures in postcolonial literature and theory – Caliban, the mimic, and the subaltern – so as to reflect on the development of this diverse, contentious field and new avenues in which to continue pursuing its guiding imperatives: foremost of which has been the critical analysis of power relations under colonialism and neocolonialism.