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The modern child and Romantic monstrosity in Doris Lessing’s The Fifth Child
par Camille François ,
publié le 17/05/2011
This study investigates the articulation between "child" and "monster" in Lessing's novella, linking the text to a tradition of contemporary fiction about the child in which the much beloved literary figure inherited from the Romantics has become a frightening other. We hope to understand the Fifth Child 's shifting boundaries between the monstrous and the ideal, the "real child" and childhood as a locus of adult desires, by tracing these dichotomies back to Romantic myths of childhood, or the distorted versions that have made it to our time.
Paul Auster: A General Introduction
par Jocelyn Dupont,
publié le 13/02/2009
This document provides a short general overview of Paul Auster’s work. After a brief discussion of Auster’s texts positioning in the literary heritage, it tackles the place and role of the writer in an often alienating environment. It then deals with the representation of the city in Auster’s work, notably Brooklyn, before concluding on the gift for storytelling that so characterizes Paul Auster’s production.
Across the ‘Wide Sargasso Sea’: Jean Rhys’s Revision of Charlotte Brontë’s Eurocentric Gothic
par Sylvie Maurel,
publié le 20/03/2008
In this article, Sylvie Maurel analyses the Gothic destabilizing machinery at work in Jean Rhys’s "Wide Sargasso Sea". The first Gothic element the author looks at is the demonic agency that haunts the novel. Colonial history lingers in Rhys’s world and accounts for some of the strange and unexpected phenomena that occur on the island. Actually, the narrative is under the double influence of a past set in an actual history of slavery and a future already written in the story of "Jane Eyre". Rhys’s characters have an uncanny prescience of what lies ahead and a sense that they cannot evade repetition. The motif of witchcraft is another element that links "WSS" to the Gothic. The motif goes beyond a picturesque reference to the West Indian context and functions as a metaphor of the relationship between language and power. Christophine’s witchcraft and Rochester’s Eurocentric discourse are two similar attempts at transforming the world through language. The power of language is also reflected in the way the novel constantly brings together multiple voices and conflicting views which seem to hide a secret rather than reveal a final truth. Rochester can only feel the presence of such a secret and risks delirium as he tries to get a grip on something that constantly eludes him.