Saroyan’s “The Black Tartars”

Frame Narrative, Nationalism and Ethnic Cleansing




William Saroyan, Frame Narrative, Nationalism, ethnic cleansing, parodic skaz, American short fiction


This article offers an examination of William Saroyan’s stance on nationalism through the analysis of “The Black Tartars” (1936), a story built on the technique of embedding which shows, through the layering of stories, two distinct models: one based upon primordialist notions of race; the other resting on the principle of ethnolinguistic homogeneity and resulting in the birth of the modern nation-state. By examining the dialogicity implicit in the frame narrative, I propose to examine Karachi’s tale as an example of “parodic skaz” which stands at odd with the author’s ideology and operates as a concave mirror reflection of the tragic fate hovering over stateless minorities.



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How to Cite

Aguilera Linde, M. D. (2023). Saroyan’s “The Black Tartars”: Frame Narrative, Nationalism and Ethnic Cleansing . Journal of English Studies, 21, 3–17.