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|Other Titles: ||Singing the ＂Inner City Blues＂: Personal and Communal Trauma of the Outsider Within|
|Authors: ||錢欽昭;Chyan, Chin-Jau|
|Keywords: ||《內城區藍調》;黑人犯罪小說;圈內外人;拉卡帕;創傷;＂Inner City Blues＂;black crime fiction;outsider within;Dominick LaCapra;trauma|
|Issue Date: ||2016-04-22 13:45:49 (UTC+8)|
|Abstract: ||This paper aims to explore Paula L. Woods' crime novel, ＂Inner City Blues＂, with a focus on the protagonist's conflicting status as a black female detective in the L.A.P.D. and how she deals with the complex entanglements related to her personal trauma and the historical trauma of the black community in the city. As a law enforcement agent, the detective, Charlotte Justice, has to defend law and order which is sometimes problematic in itself. How does she situate herself inside and outside the establishment? Moreover, the conventional narrative structure of crime fiction usually demands that every story reaches a satisfying closure when the detective cracks a case. But in Charlotte's case, does her investigation into her personal trauma and the collective trauma of Los Angeles's black community also come to a comfortable end? In other words, is the narrative of traumas whitewashed and subsumed under the hegemony of the state? To address these issues, this paper will first employ Patricia Hill Collins's idea of the ＂outsider within,＂ a vantage point historically occupied by marginalized black females, so as to understand the detective's unusual position. Although Charlotte is an outsider in a male-dominated organization, she has an exclusive access to the knowledge of the white establishment. She is thus equipped with the abilities to move among a variety of groups and has the means to resist oppression. Furthermore, in the light of Dominick LaCapra's interpretation of trauma, the detective's murder investigation in the story can be viewed as her attempt to work through her trauma. While Charlotte struggles to deal with her personal trauma, the reader also witnesses the historical traumas of the black community, which have been caused not only by external abuse of power of institutional racism but also by internal patriarchal black cultural nationalism. The murder in the story is uncovered at some point, but it by no means suggests that traumas are cured and the detective's subjectivity is incorporated into the law. Charlotte's investigation of traumas should be considered a process, which allows different voices from the margins and provides more possibilities for the future.
非裔美國作家寶拉伍茲（Paula L. Woods）於1999 年出版的犯罪小說《內城區藍調》（＂Inner City Blues＂），女主角夏洛特賈斯堤斯（Charlotte Justice）以洛杉磯警探的身分登場，故事中犯罪事件牽涉到洛城黑幫與毒品氾濫的歷史，讓敘事充滿張力。偵探身為體制的一分子，立足點在哪裡？當國家律法與種族正義產生衝突，她要如何自處？伍茲藉由書寫夏洛特的個人創傷，反映洛城黑人社群的歷史創傷，但是傳統犯罪小說敘事結構最後無可避免的破案與終結，是否意味著偵探主角關於創傷的敘述也走向痊癒的盡頭，甚至被國家霸權或主流意識型態所收編吸納？本文首先援引非美女性主義學者柯林斯（Patricia Hill Collins）的「圈內外人」（outsider within）概念，來理解夏洛特的特殊身分。她在白人男性主導的團體內雖身為種族與性別上雙重弱勢的「外人」，卻擁有洞悉「圈內」組織運作知識的管道，可以跨越游移在不同社群的疆界，提供抗拒的另類基礎。本文亦借重歷史學者拉卡帕（Dominick LaCapra）解讀心理創傷的論點，將夏洛特在小說中展開的調查行動，視為主角消解（working through）創傷的開始。她在記憶個人創傷的過程中，讀者也逐步見證到黑人社群的創傷，而創傷除了來自外部主流霸權的歧視，還有黑人民族主義運動進程中曾被忽視的內部性別壓迫。夏洛特最後偵破謀殺案，但這並非意味個人與社群創傷已經痊癒，更不代表偵探主體被國家律法收編，而是藉由主角記憶與檢驗創傷的過程，提醒大家過去曾經被略而不談的歷史，讓更多來自邊緣的弱勢人物發聲，提供想像未來的契機與可能性。
|Relation: ||輔仁大學外語學報 12，頁 43-64|
|Appears in Collections:||[英文學系暨研究所] 期刊論文|
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