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作者 Reitano, Natalie
書名 Against redemption: Interrupting the future in the fiction of Vladimir Nabokov, Kazuo Ishiguro and W. G. Sebald
國際標準書號 9780542851049
book jacket
說明 285 p
附註 Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 67-08, Section: A, page: 2976
Adviser: Wayne Koestenbaum
Thesis (Ph.D.)--City University of New York, 2006
This dissertation considers how Nabokov, Ishiguro and Sebald---each of whom has abjured, in different ways, a sense of national belonging---rethink community in relation to the legacies of totalitarianism, imperialism and fascism. I read Ada, The Unconsoled and Austerlitz both through and against theories of community proposed by Bataille, Blanchot, Nancy and Agamben. Forming a sort of counter-discourse to numerous recent "traumatic" discourses, these philosophical treatments of community would interrupt a prevailing belief that any engagement with the past inaugurates melancholic repetition; they seek instead to locate alternative constructions of community in a present that would be neither a transition to a predestined future nor the redemption of a lost past. Community, as a question of whether belonging can resist nostalgia or anticipation for some (national) immanence lost or to come, largely determines the novels' temporal logic. Each addresses the possibility of divorcing the present from an orientation toward loss by interrupting narrative futures precipitated by "catastrophe" and a sense of "imminent crisis." And yet each, in its confrontation with political upheaval, historical impasse and the ostensibly ruptural logic of modernity itself, threatens to overtake that logic where interruption is pressed into the service of self-perpetuation. For if the novels resist a "future anterior" by interrupting an indebtedness to the past, they also exceed the present that each would delimit by refusing to end. Together they reveal persistent difficulties with formulations of interruption, limit and abandonment that would resist fantasies of national redemption: each novel is itself a fantasy of national unbelonging that attempts to substitute its own aesthetic totality for a sense of nationhood that has been lost and that remains, despite Nabokov, Ishiguro and Sebald's disavowals of national identity, a locus of longing. However, although myths of national origins and rebirth do continue to play out in these novels, an experience of the "limit of community"---that threshold between the present and what it is not, between finitude and indeterminacy---continues to challenge any "literary immortality" that would overwrite it
School code: 0046
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 67-08A
主題 Literature, Comparative
Literature, Modern
Literature, American
Literature, English
Alt Author City University of New York
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