Culture and Ethics in Salman Rushdie’s The Enchantress of Florence


  • Jogamaya Bayer Independent Scholar


Salman Rushdie’s novel The Enchantress of Florence (2008) tells the story of a princess of  the Mughal dynasty and how her name is effaced from history. The narrative, mixing historical facts with fiction, depicts the princess’s perilous journey across continents in her search to find a home.  Following Steven Shankman’s reading of Emmanuel Levinas, in whose work the primacy of  ethics over ontology requires that we take responsibility for the Other, (Shankman, 2010: 15–16), this paper traces the trajectory of Rushdie’s text that represents, through the character  of Akbar, the primacy of ethics as both before and beyond culture.


ethics, proximity, Mughal Empire, religious tolerance, culture of inclusion, syncretisation


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Author Biography

Jogamaya Bayer, Independent Scholar

Jogamaya Bayer is an independent scholar. She has presented papers at EACLALS (the European Association for Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies) and other international conferences and has published articles on postcolonial literature and theory. She is the author of Transgressing Boundaries: Essays on Postcolonial Literature. London: Roman Books. 2013. Her publications include “The Return of the Prehistoric and the “Deathwish” of the Tribals in Mahasweta Devi’s Novella,Pterodactyl, Puran Sahay, and Pirtha.” Indi@logs, Vol 4, April 2017: 95-109.





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