South Atlantic Hauntings: Geographies of Memory, Ancestralities and Re-Memberings

In South Atlantic Hauntings: Geographies of Memory, Ancestralities and Re-Memberings I engage with the possibilities for speaking from spaces of elision through a conception of ghosts and haunting. I use the idea of elision with reference to enunciations and knowledges produced as marginal through processes of disavowing the legitimacy, value or presence of ways of knowing and being that are ‘othered’ as they are different from hegemonic norms that emerged in the ‘Global North’. Elision, however, suggests that the subsumed is always, and regardless of its omission, present among and a part of that which is spoken, written and recognised. I am preoccupied with enunciations from spaces and bodies beyond epistemic power and the crisis such epistemically disobedient articulations cause to hegemony. I use the language of the spectral to allude to this sense of a simultaneous absence and presence that describes presence beyond the parameters of the real as it is constituted by the episteme of imperial western knowledge. I interrogate the link between coloniality of knowledge and coloniality of Being in my engagement with the production of the ‘real’ as it is shaped through the violence of epistemicide. I privilege artistic practice that produces a ‘presencing’ of the ghostly to articulate the elided towards the possibility of that which is denied making its presence in relation known in a moment of haunting. This language of the spectral is integral to my engagement with the illusive slippages in time, space, ‘reality’, hegemony and absences in relation to enunciations from spaces of elision that attest to the presence of multiple contesting epistemes and their contingent realties. By locating myself and the focus of this interrogation in the space of the elided, I aim to enunciate from precisely the space hegemony would disavow.
A thesis submitted to the Faculty of Humanities, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Johannesburg, 2018
Lelliott, Kitso Lynn (2018) South Atlantic hauntings:Geographies of memory, ancestral ties and re-memberings, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, <>