Bertrand Tavernier’s film Coup de torchon (1981) in dialogue with Jim Thompson’s novel Pop . 1280 (1964) and Louis-Ferdinand Céline’s Voyage au bout de la nuit (1932) produces an historical echo chamber around racial violence which is rooted in layers of historical practices and discourses with transatlantic ramifications. This article argues that racial violence resonates across historical periods and functions as a metonymic narrative thread between the texts, bringing together the history of slavery, racial segregation, colonial violence and neo-colonial power as an integral part of Western culture and identity. This article analyses this historical convergence as a form of multiple enunciation, creating a metatextual space which allows for the articulation of a strong critique of Western imperial violence and thought systems.
How to Cite:
Watt, S. “Thompson, Céline and Tavernier: An Historical Echo Chamber of Western Imperial Ideology”. New Readings, vol. 17, no. 2, 2020, pp. 105–123. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18573/newreadings.117