Reconfiguring Gothic-Postmodernism: A Reading of Namina Forna’s (2021) The Gilded Ones

  • Julius Kipkorir Chepkwony Turkana University College
  • Nabea Wendo, PhD Laikipia University
Keywords: Identity, Magic realism, Mystery, Phantasmagoria, Postmodernism
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This paper explores Namina Forna’s (2021) debut novel, The Gilded Ones, as manifesting postmodern aspects which allow the text to comment on twenty-first-century life. Forna employs certain parameters of postmodernism that elucidate the postmodern lifestyle. Anchored on the bedrock of postmodernism, this paper dissects the selected text in order to reveal an artistic trajectory that captures the pulse and the tempor contemporaneous with postmodern life. Postmodernism has brought a revolution in the way a text is appreciated since it rejects the limiting boundaries of art and allows plurality of interpretations. Locating Forna’s text, The Gilded Ones within postmodernism theory, this paper employed a library-based close reading to explore the rejuvenation of horrors and fears encapsulated in the twenty first century. It engaged an interpretivist research design that allowed data to be chiselled out of primary text and coded for interpretation. Judgmental sampling was done to arrive at Forna’s The Gilded Ones since the text is replete with postmodernist aspects. The study is instrumental in addressing the fluidity of identity from a numinous paradigm allowing the physical or reality and phantasmagoria to conflate. The paper avers that Forna in her selected text, encapsulates the mechanics and aspects of Gothic-postmodernism which captures succinctly issues contemporaneous with the postmodern society. Gothic aesthetics have been used to dignify and elevate the history of a community. It is hoped that the study makes significant contribution on the dialectics surrounding identity as it voices postmodern fears. The study is instrumental in rooting for the recognition of Africa’s postmodern genre


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2 August, 2023
How to Cite
Chepkwony, J., & Wendo, N. (2023). Reconfiguring Gothic-Postmodernism: A Reading of Namina Forna’s (2021) The Gilded Ones. East African Journal of Arts and Social Sciences, 6(2), 1-10.

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