Monash University
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The other as deviant: literary representations of the trujillato and apartheid

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posted on 2017-03-01, 23:50 authored by Begovich, Paul
The instrumentalisation of physical differences in human beings has been a characteristic of diverse national discourses. Dominant groups in Latin America and Southern Africa made up of white or quasi-white national minorities used race to determine power relations in multi-racial milieus. The dominant groups during the trujillato (1930–1961) and apartheid (1948–1994) periods in the Dominican Republic and South Africa gained and maintained power by deploying racist politics and discourse towards their nations’ black inhabitants. The discourse of these dominant groups included discriminatory and stereotypical representations that portrayed the other as deviant and rationalised the existing socio-economic disadvantage of the other, a legacy of earlier colonial conquest. This thesis examines constructions of the other as deviant as manifested in literary representations of the trujillato in the Dominican Republic and apartheid in South Africa. The representations of these two timeframes by a range of authors allow for an understanding of how deviance is constructed and how it cannot be reduced to a single location and timeframe. Rather, we see that deviance is an overarching theme of othering in which different and interrelated modes of deviance (the other as uncivilised, amoral, violent and lawless) constitute a historical narrative of othering of black and dark-skinned people that traverses historical and cultural contexts.


Principal supervisor

Rita Wilson

Additional supervisor 1

Sarah McDonald

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre

Languages, Literatures, Cultures and Linguistics

Degree Type


Campus location



Faculty of Arts