Curdella Forbes deploys a complex of historically marked territorial metaphors—plot, plantation, squatting, trespass, and transgression—to read two apparently different texts, Maryse Condé's quasi-tragic 1976 novel Heremakhonon, which is set on the African continent, and a hilarious e-mail (which Forbes has titled “Puncie”) circulated on the Internet. Arguing that these diachronous texts exemplify a culture of ideological disobedience that is celebrated as evidence of Caribbean identity yet undercuts Caribbean (and diasporic) modes of imagining identity and relation, Forbes shows how trespass and transgression, and the enduring concepts of plot and plantation, acquire completely different contours and raise different ethical questions depending on location. Thus Africa, as an ostensibly valorized original homeland for black Caribbean people, and the no-man's-land of cyberspace produce sites of ethical discomfort that radically test the celebrations associated with transgression in a postcolonial context.

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