oa Alternation - Re-constructing Grey Street in Imraan Coovadia's The Wedding

Volume 15, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1023-1757



In this paper I begin an exploration of the fictional constructions of Grey Street in lmraan Coovadia's novel, The Wedding, in order to attempt a deeper understanding of the connection between writers, place and identity in the South African Indian context. I am particularly interested in the experience of South African Indian urban space and how it is represented in literature. The Grey Street complex is a very interesting site for a study of this kind as it has, since the colonial era, been an intensely contested space. It is also a good indicator of South African Indian life since eighty percent of Indians are urban and over forty percent reside in Durban (Meer 1969:1). Many theories of urban space have already been established and much has been written in South Africa about the history and geography of the Grey Street complex. However, little has been said about the literary representations of Grey Street and a study of this kind can hopefully contribute to the debate on the cultural representation of urban space in South Africa and stimulate further studies of Indian literary production centered on writers, place and identity in the country.

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