Kulturni i književni aspekti kolektivnih predstava o manjinskim grupama u kolonijalnoj Americi
Committee membersŽunić, Dragan
Miljković Bojanić, Ema
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Doctoral thesis The collective representations of minority groups in the culture and literature of colonial America deals with the collective representations of minority groups perpetuated via literature and culture of the first English thirteen colonies in colonial North America. Starting from the socio-psychological premise that collective representations are common values, beliefs, symbols and practices perpetuated through culture and anthropological research of intergroup relations, representations of minority groups in literature and culture are viewed as images of colonial Others. Considerations of minority groups and intergroup relations in sociology and anthropology are linked with the postcolonial and psychoanalytical idea of otherness as pivotal in the process of identity formation. Since minority groups are viewed as collective Other in literature and culture, theoretical background of postcolonial studies and orientalism is used to highlight Othering and other... representational practices. Images of Other in the literature of colonial America are also viewed from the point of view of imagology which means that both fiction and non-fiction texts are considered, while also taking into consideration their purpose and historical and cultural contexts from which they originated. The corpus includes fiction and non-fiction, legal and other formal documents, paintings, engravings and other works of art and artifacts from the period of discovery and explorations, as well as the works of the English colonists in North America until the establishment of the independent USA and its national literature. The aspects of minority group collective representations that are considered are: reductionism, hierarchical ordering, degradation and continuity. Representations vary from extremely negative to extremely positive ones and most of them are reductionist, based on hierarchical ordering, degrading for minority group members and have proven to be resilient over a long period of time. The inference can be made that the images of others have often also been the images of the dominant group because the ascribed negative characteristics of minorities are defined as the opposites of the dominant identity traits. A negative image of the Other is often a positive self-image, which may account for the tendency of the dominant group in colonial America to perpetuate mostly negative images of minority group members in literature and culture.