Am I Not a Postcolonial Subject?

Authors: Haris Adhikari (Kathmandu University, Nepal)
Speakers: Haris Adhikari
Strand: General Sociolinguistics
Session Type: General Session


The essay, which is inspired by different concepts of hegemony and international relations, critically dissects the widespread Nepali (ultra-)nationalistic rhetoric that Nepal has never been under the influences of any colonial and neocolonializing forces, and therefore, it has always remained an autonomous nation. It begins with personal lifeworld experiences involving painful diasporic traces in Manipur, to discuss political and cultural aspects of the topic. The major contention in the essay is that Nepal and its people have long been under the influences of both colonial forces (external as well as internal) and different forms of neocolonializing hegemonies. Forms of institutionalized hegemony are what the essay identifies as the biggest internal problems. Alongside, it highlights how structural violence, as part of hegemonic forces, has made the Nepali lot miserable for ages. Finally, it forwards propositions of better international relations, particularly between Nepal and India, and calls for social, cultural, institutional, and economic regenerations, rather than political revolutions after revolutions.

Keywords: Nepali ultra-nationalistic rhetoric, Colonial and neocolonializing forces, Institutionalized hegemony, Structural violence, International relations, Regenerations