"The Gunny Sack" by M. G. Vassanji. A review of the most important topics

Essay, 2022

8 Pages, Grade: 13


Abstract or Introduction

After a short Summary, this paper deals with the themes of travelling memory and history; diaspora, displacement & diasporic imagination; cross-cultural encounters; role of the woman/gender role; and travel and mobility. Each topic has been written in the form of an essay and works closely with the novel "The Gunny Sack", i.e. the individual examples per topic are supported by text excerpts.
Excerpt from an essay that deals with the topic of "Traveling Memory and History": In his novel "The Gunny Sack", M.G. Vassanji depicts the family history of Salim, whose family is in constant movement as they move from one place to another, constantly accompanied by historical events. This essay seeks to investigate the theme of travel-memory and history through a series of examples. The novel focuses on the impact of history and how history affects the present. In "The Gunny Sack", the narrator Salim Juma unpacks his family history, and thus he uncovers the past with all its attendant features. Be it the political history of East Africa or the riddles of memories. [...] It can thus be assumed that family history serves as an extension of political history. Furthermore, memory as a narrative device also builds a bridge between the past, present and future, as Salim emphasizes that history must not repeat itself and fervently hopes that he will be the last migrant from his family. [...] However, the past, which is largely in the gunny sack, should never be forgotten. In addition, Vassanji tends to preserve collective memory and present it through the experiences of individuals. The gunny sack contains many mementos, each of which tells a chapter of his family's history. "The Gunny Sack" is both a story about the arrival and life of an extended family in East Africa and a repository for the collective memory and life stories of many other Asian-Africans.


"The Gunny Sack" by M. G. Vassanji. A review of the most important topics
Justus-Liebig-University Giessen  (Anglistik)
An Introducton to African Diasporic Literature in English: Mobility, Migration, and Cultural Shifts
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ISBN (eBook)
Linguistics, African Literature, African Diasporic Literature, Mobility, Migration, Cultural Shifts, African Studies, African Diaspora, Literature, The Gunny Sack, M.G. Vassanji, Vassanji, Travel Literature, Travel Memory, Displacement, Diasporic Imagination , Diasporic Identity, Cross-Cultural Encounters, Travel and Mobility
Quote paper
Anonymous, 2022, "The Gunny Sack" by M. G. Vassanji. A review of the most important topics, Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/1418125


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