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Orientalism in the Brazilian way: the postcolonial in Clarice Lispector

Grant number: 18/25027-2
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): August 01, 2019
Effective date (End): August 28, 2020
Field of knowledge:Linguistics, Literature and Arts - Literature - Comparative Literature
Principal researcher:Alfredo Cesar Barbosa de Melo
Grantee:Ana Luíza Vieira Kehdi
Home Institution: Instituto de Estudos da Linguagem (IEL). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil
Associated scholarship(s):19/24661-2 - The postcolonial in Clarice Lispector, BE.EP.IC


The main goal of this research internship is to take a careful look into a theoretical insight present in the short story "A menor mulher do mundo", published in Laços de família (1960). In this shor story, Lispector narrates two cultural encounters (one between the European explorer and a very short African woman; the other one between families from a country with a history of slavery and colonialism and the picture of aforementioned African woman) and analyzes very shrewdly the different reactions from the explorer and the families. In this research, we intend to show how the short story can contribute to the debate on the (in)compatibility between postcolonial studies and Brazilian studies, once a great deal of postcolonial reflections coming from metropolitan universities focuses on the theorization of the first kind of encounter (the European versus the non-western native) and dimisses too easily the second encounter (the colonial and seigneurial Euro-American family and its sociability marked by violence, hierarchy and familiarity with the non-western population).

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