Reading contemporary fiction through diverse disciplines appears to be a crucial part of recent narrative studies. The sociological approach to reading literary works provides a tenable framework for the analysis of fiction. Caryl Phillips’s The Lost Child demonstrates the characters’ obsession with their sense of belonging and identity through finding new facets in the post-war metropolis and through delving into the past and the present to find the lost children of the Empire, their identity, and roots. The present paper endeavors to explore the novel’s characters Monica, Tommy, and Ben through Loïc Wacquant’s conceptions of advanced marginality, territorial stigma, and the ghetto and maximizes the diversified perspectives offered by sociology in Phillips’s fiction. This exploration further delineates the true and indisputable link between fiction and sociology while emphasizing the real context of the novel under consideration. The article, through focusing on Wacquant’s notion of the ghetto, investigates the overshadows of the social life and identity of the people living in stigmatized territories. T he study of Phillip’s novel thus demonstrates the crucial role of literature in promoting social justice in a reflexive manner through literature and sociology simultaneously, as well as in establishing contemporary fiction as a reliable discourse in social and critical sciences.


ghetto, identity, neighborhood taint, periphery, precariat, urbanity

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Kritika Kultura
Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University

The Philippine Commission on Higher Education (CHED) declares Kritika Kultura as a CHED-recognized journal under the Journal Challenge Category of its Journal Incentive Program.

International Board of Editors

Jan Baetens
Faculty of Arts
Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven (Belgium)

Joel David
Professor of Cultural Studies
Inha University (South Korea)

Michael Denning
Professor of American Studies and English
Department of English
Yale University (US)

Faculty of Cultural Sciences
Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia)

Regenia Gagnier
Professor of English
University of Exeter (UK)

Leela Gandhi
John Hawkes Professor of the Humanities and English
Brown University (US)

Inderpal Grewal
Professor of Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies
Professor of South Asian Studies, Ethnicity, Race and Migration Studies
Yale University (US)

Peter Horn
Professor Emeritus and Honorary Lifetime Fellow
University of Cape Town (South Africa)
Honorary Professor and Research Associate in German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

Anette Horn
Professor of German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

David Lloyd
Distinguished Professor of English
University of California, Riverside (US)

Bienvenido Lumbera
National Artist for Literature
Professor Emeritus
University of the Philippines

Rajeev S. Patke
Director of the Division of Humanities
Professor of Humanities
Yale NUS College (Singapore)

Vicente L. Rafael
Giovanni and Amne Costigan Endowed Professor of History
University of Washington (US)

Vaidehi Ramanathan
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Davis (US)

Temario Rivera
Professorial Lecturer
Department of Political Science
University of the Philippines

E. San Juan, Jr.
Philippines Studies Center (US)

Neferti X.M. Tadiar
Professor of Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Barnard College (US)
Director of the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race
Columbia University (US)

Antony Tatlow
Honorary Professor of Drama
Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)