Arts of the Contact Zone

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Pages: 4
(approximately 235 words/page)

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When first reading Mary Louise Pratt’s essay, “Arts of the Contact Zone,” one may feel overwhelmed by the level of writing and philosophy it is composed of. She uses terms and phrases such as autoethnography, imagined community, and safe house in this work to help demonstrate the reasoning of her thoughts and feelings about historical and actual events she speaks about. In her essay Mary Louise Pratt talks about “transculturation” and “ethnography.” She speaks …

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…a profounder effect on the reader, however, the text will be interpreted differently by people in different positions in the contact zone. Often times, one may experience rage and discomfort, and other times one may experience revelation and mutual understanding. Finally, when a person’s beliefs and values are challenged, they have a tendency to return to a safe house, where they are accepted and validated. This is the basic working of the contact zone.