The aim of this thesis is to approach the role of the self as it emerges in three texts that are differently impacted by the end of colonialism. This is done by redeploying Roland Barthes' theory of semiology as a way of looking at the spaces between signs as the clue to what the text suggests as a historical document. The spaces between signs will open up the contrapuntal readings of texts that are sometimes called postcolonial. This thesis examines how identity is unmade in Coetzee's Foe, Brian Friel's Translations, and Mahmoud Darwish's Tibaq (A Contrapuntal Reading: On Edward Said). Roland Barthes focuses on how the textual signs can form a new image; hence, in a new reading of any text, Edward Said's contrapuntal approach helps contextualize these signs, allowing us to reach a more comprehensive reading. I aim at answering the question of whether these three texts are postcolonial. This study concludes that the three texts, which might fall under the umbrella of postcolonialism, can be classified differently, based on the contrapuntal reading of textual signs.


English & Comparative Literature Department

Degree Name

MA in English & Comparative Literature

Graduation Date


Submission Date

February 2017

First Advisor

Melaney, William D.

Committee Member 1

Nimis, Mattawa, Khaled Stephen


42 p.

Document Type

Master's Thesis


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