A Dystopia in the Service of Fluctuating Frontiers: Sansal Boualem’s 2084 the End of the World
For Algerian novelist Sansal Boualem, to understand a border it seems essential to know something about its history and its evolution. Also the frontier refers not only to an imaginary line separating two territories, but also to an abstract idea of the relation between inside and outside. In that sense, Anzaldúa describes the border, in Bordelands: La Frontera, as “physically present” wherever several cultures are contiguous. She distinguishes metaphorically different kinds of borders and crossings such as geopolitical, economic, sexual, social and multicultural. She helps us bridge the gap between collective and individual identity. Her writing against all oppressions leads to new explorations of her theory. Let’s not forget that the border continues to be an open wound.
This paper focuses on the use of the border as a metaphor for multicultural crossings and self-assertiveness. While asking the questions: “What is the border? What is on the other side?,” the narrator in 2084 understands the border as a passage to the unknown, to a certain openness. Far from materializing the unity, the frontier is therefore a place of transition which encounters diversity, an in-between or as Anzaldúa likes to say a “third place.” This notion reflects on what unites and separates us by establishing a metaphor for identity.