The thirty-fourth episode of Professor Ato Quayson’s vlog Critic.Reading.Writing is up!
In this episode, the professor analyzes allegorical representations of the city-state in Fiston Mwanza Mujila’s award-winning debut novel, Tram 83 (2014).
Quayson dissects Tram 83 as an aural text, much like his previous analysis of Wole Soyinka’s Death and the King’s Horseman. He reads several passages aloud, particularly dialogue, in the style of what he calls “dissonant acapella” to invoke deeper meaning behind what appears to be discombobulated dialogue on the page. The professor explains,
The novel has the appearance of putting together jazz variations as though it was a symphony of different instruments in sometimes playful and sometimes painful series of conversations. At once picking up on notes from each other, but also contradicting and contesting what has been offered. In this way, Tram 83 converts he jazz variation that we see in the novel into a mode of critique of the African post-colony. For the post-colony is seen as an incoherent assemblage, a space of possibilities and also chaos.
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Critic.Reading.Writing with Ato Quayson is the show for booklovers hungry for meaningful conversations about books.
New episodes of Critic.Reading.Writing with Ato Quayson will be posted every Saturday.