By Joel Joseprabu, Evangeline Raulston, and Sabrina Wilson
Follow this link to listen to Ambivalence in Action.
This podcast takes the style of a debate game show in which four competitors, each representing either a colonized country (Antigua, Ireland, Nigeria) or a colonizer (England), participate in three rounds of Family Feud style questions. During the show, the host introduces questions on the ambivalent relationship between the colonizer and the colonized, and the competitors discuss their points of view. The show’s three questions addresses issues of culture, religion, and economics, and a bonus round includes final remarks on the overall positive or negative effect of ambivalence in each country. After each party offers their answer, the host synthesizes their responses to analyze the role of ambivalence in colonial relationships. At the end of the show, the host announces to listeners that they can call in to decide which country was the overall winner of the debate game show. As the discussions throughout the show reveal, ambivalence affects the cultures, religions, and economies of colonized subjects and their colonizer in complicated ways that may not be clearly defined as good or bad.
This podcast draws from Chinua Achebe’s novel Things Fall Apart, Brian Friel’s play Translations, and Jamaica Kincaid’s memoir A Small Place. It also references published academic research, including Misty L. Bastian’s “Young Converts: Christian Missions, Gender and Youth in Onitsha, Nigeria 1880-1929,” Caroline Ifeka-Moller’s “White Power: Social-Structural Factors in Conversion to Christianity, Eastern Nigeria, 1921-1966,” and A. Bernard Knapp’s “Cyprus at the End of the Late Bronze Age: Crisis and Colonization or Continuity and Hybridization?” Finally, this podcast incorporates ideas from postcolonial theory, including concepts from Homi Bhabha’s The Location of Culture, Frantz Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth, and Edward Said’s Orientalism.
*This podcast’s featured image, which depicts a face being pushed and pulled in different directions, represents ambivalence on an individual scale. The image may be found here.