Analysing the novels Foe and The Handmaid’s Tale from Michel Foucault’s theoretical views in his work What Is an Author?, we may notice how the unclear parts or unexplained details in urtexts, such as the novel Robinson Crusoe and The Bible, give possibilities for different interpretations, truths and new prefigured novels inspired by the original texts. In Coetzee’s and Atwood’s rewritten versions of the canonized stories, there are oscillations of a few different perspectives: postmodern, feminist, postcolonial and postfeminist. The novel Foe, a classic story about Robinson Crusoe has been reconstucted from a postmodern perspective, while in the novel The Handmaid’s Tale, we come across a prefigured version of an episode and a character from The Bible, set in the context of a dystopian society in the future. Challenging imperial and patriarchal discourse at the beginning of the novels (by Susan Barton in Foe and Offred in The Handmaid’s Tale) resembles approaches of feminist works. However, certain scenes and characters (Susan’s attitude of ‘’the colonizer’’ toward Friday in Foe or the position of rebels in The Handmaid’s Tale) may refer to writing stories from postcolonial discourse. Coetzee’s implicit irony, when he depicts mood swings in Susan and Atwood’s implicit condemnation of the Aunts’s cruelty towards the Handmaids, may be interpreted as a postfeminist reaction against contradictions of feminist ideals. All in all, apart from those diverse possibilities for interpretation which the two authors offered during their (re)writing of novels, other truths (notions, speeches and parts of the texts in literature, culture, and religion) were also destabilized and examined in the novels Foe and The Handmaid’s Tale, as our analyses reveal.
In this paper the author classifies and explains some of numerous examples of marginalisation of significant Serbian female authors from the second half of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century – Milica Stojadinović Srpkinja, Draga Gavrilović, Mileva Simić, Danica Bandić, Milka Grgurova, Jelena J. Dimitrijević. Their works were negatively evaluated by the dominant intepreters, academic professors and the historians of Serbian literature. Contrary to expectations their criticism was not supported by reasoning. Historians also ignored relevant historical events. To to acknowledge a few female authors meant to present them inadequately, mainly as beautiful women or spinsters. Some other discriminatory facts in presenting female writers were connected with the length of analyses, attitude and the language. The dominant interpreters usually named incomplete list of women authors’ works, regularly omitting their translated pieces. There was even an open statement that the author’s gender was a starting point for attributing discriminatory values to male or female authors, in favor of the male ones. As one of the most manipulative strategies, one can point out the obstructions to research and publishing of women authors.
The paper deals with the problem of truth in literature from the perspective of the postmodern confession. It tries to analyse the authenticity model of truth in literature, that is, to show the problem of the honesty category in the genre that takes honesty as its basic assumption. The postmodern process of making the truth in literature relative has not bypassed sincerity as the pledge of truth in literature; therefore the attention has been given particularly to the postmodern insights into these questions. Although the theory and the literary-artistic practice in the postmodern period do not offer definite solutions, they clearly show, due to its nature, all the weaknesses of the model of truth in literature, like this one. On the other hand, what is more important here, they resist any attempt to establish the completeness of meaning and the monopoly over the truth in literature. Postmodern attitude towards the truth in the confession is viewed in relation to the theory of deconstruction by Jacques Derrida and in relation to the story Otisak srca na zidu (Heart Print on the Wall) by Borislav Pekić, from his story collection Novi Jerusalim (New Jerusalem), as well as in relation to explicit attitudes of these authors towards the truth in the genre of confession.
One of the most significant contributions of the twentieth-century Australian poetry was the invention of the so-called “voyager poetry”. The term, which refers to poems about mariners, maritime adventures, exploration and discoveries, reached its most complete expression in the oeuvre of Kenneth Slessor, arguably one of the most celebrated Australian poets, who is largely considered to be the first authentically modernist voice of Australia. In presenting his most famous poems, such as “The Atlas” and “Five Visions of Captain Cook”, and describing the process of literary mythmaking on which they are based, this paper will rely on Roland Barthes’s definition of contemporary myth as a second-order semiological system. One of the most prominent features of contemporary myth, according to Barthes, is that it distorts historical reality by transforming history into nature. This paper proposes that Slessor uses the same process of distortion in his voyager poems, rooting them in historically or geographically approved facts, only to render those facts universally acceptable as archetypal situations or mythical categories. Our second proposition is that Slessor’s process of mythmaking is ideologically motivated by the rising national sentiment in the aftermath of World War I. Slessor’s major poems were written between 1927 and 1932, the period when Australia strove to establish its political and cultural identity independent of the imperialistic British influences. The analysis of the poems aims to show how available historical and geographical data are universalized in Slessor’s poetry and how they consequently transform history into nature. Whereas historical truth is lost in the process, universal truth is emphasized as a legitimate expression of the state of the modern man.
Irony mocks truth in language by always implying at least two possible meanings: the literal and the figurative one. As such, irony as a figure of speech is conducive to the topics of Zadie Smith’s writing. The omniscient narrator of White Teeth tells the story of a transnational metropolis in an elaborate, ironic tone, verging on parody, in order to bring out the multifaceted and complex relational network that underlies the identities of the 20th century Londoners. The slippage and ambivalence inherent in verbal irony reflect Smith’s multiethnic setting, where no easy labels of identity apply, just as the meaning of an ironic utterance is not singular and is subject to multiple interpretations. The narrator of White Teeth conveys irony on the extradiegetic level with the function to expose how living in a multiethnic society leads to a deconstruction of the subject’s identity and his deeply-rooted, dogmatic truths about himself and the undying Other.
The article seeks to situate motivationally Camus’ vision of “corrected creation” in literary and ideological controversies of his time. Relying on systematically unrepresented but numerous and explicit reflections on the status of literary and the role of artistic practice, it also intends to point to the theoretical argumenation and aesthetic justification of such a vision. Conclusion is that the seemingly reluctant Camus’ position is the product of a conscious decision – and its implementation – that the task of the artist is primarily to understand and, contrary to the subversive doctrines of the salvation, with his rebellious announcement of considerate revival in the name of justice and beauty, to creatively testify contradictions of his own time and advocate perhaps unconceivable comprehensive reconciliation.
The main subject of this paper is the problem of love as shown in the Old French Arthurian romance called the Vulgata Cycle, especially its last part – La Mort le Roi Artus. This thirteenth century romance is the basis for all other Arthurian tales as it represents a summary of all themes associated with the legends of King Arthur and courtly literature, such as the forbidden love between Lancelot and Guinevere, the quest for the Graal and other adventures of the Knights of the Round Table. The main theme however, woven through each of the presented tales throughout the whole work, is love. Whether it’s the amor encompassed with the ideal of the chivalric code emphasizing its spiritual component or profane mortal love, this emotion is omnipresent in the plot. Based on the examples of many different forms of love, the paper will demonstrate the link between how the emotion of love and its manifestations were described in the romance and what the then leading philosophical theories had to say about amor and emotions. With this comparison an attempt will be made to find the connection between prevalences described in the romance and the philosophical truths.
The paper considers an issue of recognising the truth in the novels of Don DeLillo in an attempt to show that works of this author never offer recognition of the truth through recognition of facts, historical documents and stories, but unveil the truth in inexplicable, mystical ways. The truth is mainly recognised collectively, while it seems that broad masses of people are connected by an invisible force that suddenly enables them to access a pool of knowlege; an extended hand of this invisible force are the media that hold the power to bring DeLillo’s characters to a state similar to religious trance. The paper will also try to define the role of an artist and art production, which, as it seems, hold the key role in moving the bounderies to truth recognition in DeLilo’s opus.
My central premise is that approaching political literature as a grassroots expression of American democracy offers a crucial vantage point for a critical look at America’s erroneous conceptions of itself. Traceable to the ubiquitous culture of spin, questions about the level of citizens’ participation—or indeed, lack thereof—in the political process are really questions about the degree to which political apathy is rooted in and reflected by the culture in which we all participate.
The paper deals with the relationship between literature and truth, taking as a point of departure an assumption that the relationship is to a great extent determined by the current interest of the public in certain work, interest of literary critics and marketing promotion. The example of the 2013 list of bestsellers shows an extent to which a self-presented truth of a work has an impact on the interest of the public, as well as to what extent the expectations as to the truthfulness shape works of literature. In the conclusion of the paper a view is taken that the truth assumes upon itself a kind of a role both of censorship and auto-censorship of the work that is being written.