Self-exile such as Rushdie’s is not a new phenomenon. Whether it is modernists like James Joyce, Joseph Conrad or T. S. Eliot or a postmodernist like Rushdie, the focus of exile is not on pain. But the exile of Western writers, whether Joyce, Conrad or Eliot, took place within the context of European or Western society; if there was a difference in milieu, it was between provincial and metropolitan. In the case of Third World exiles like Rushdie, the difference between the West and the Third World implies a more significant difference — between lifestyles and cultures. Yet, both types find exile an enabling experience.
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