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Abstract

In her article "Commodity and Waste as National Allegory in Recent South African and Post-Soviet Fiction" Alla Ivanchikova analyzes the issue of commodity in its relation to identity. The article contains a reading of two novels: The Quiet Violence of Dreams by K. Sello Duiker and Dukhless. Povest o nenastoiaschem cheloveke (Douh-Less: The Tale of an Unreal Person) by Sergey Minaev. Rapid political changes, both in South Africa and the former Soviet Bloc were accompanied both by rapid changes in the practices of consumption and also by often inconsistent cultural efforts to establish the meaning of these practices. Ivanchikova argues that in contemporary South African and post-socialist Russian culture there is an attempt to reconstitute identity through the discourse of commodity consumption and self-sale. Further, Ivanchikova examines the contradictions of consumption and self-sale in the "third world," the issues of Western privilege and power, and the notion of prostitution as a symbol of cultural anxiety about a nation's future.

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