n English in Africa - Put to rights : testimony, witnessing and human rights in : review article




The debate about whether it is necessary - or, indeed, possible - to distinguish between fictional and non-fictional narratives rages on. Those who argue that such distinctions are spurious are armed with some heavy artillery: they point out that all attempts to convey factual information are shaped in accordance with the generic and - more broadly - cultural norms governing such texts; all textual representations of the real carry the biases and limitations not only of the recording 'I' but more profoundly of the language in which they are expressed; all apprehensions of the real (including the self) are mediated - or even more fundamentally, directed - by culture and history.


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