Literary Refractions

Broj 1 - Godina 5 - 12/2014

Uvodnik

As a ray of light, sound, or heat changes direction in passing obliquely from one medium into another changing thus its wave velocity, so changes a literary text with every new reading as the reader adds a new layer of meaning to it or, depending on your perspective, peels off the intricate fabric of words that the writer wove around the text's hidden meaning(s) to access its richness. The ninth issue of [sic] brings you a selection of papers in Croatian and English language that represent the result of such refractions. They discuss matters of literary subversion by means of comic effects, irony, satire, and anti-poetics, or social subversion by revealing modern society as being fundamentally disciplinary and averse to individual freedom. Interpreting texts written by Shakespeare and Levinas to those by Joshua Ferris, our authors cover a vast period of literary creativity only to show that what always and forever tickles the imagination of writers is the human condition. To write about the dreams and the human mind, or direct films that question the authenticity of life, means to employ different motifs and stories with the aim to return to ourselves and our daily existence refracted first by the creative genius of writers and then again by the curiosity of scholars. ..

Pročitaj cijeli članak →
Izdvojeno

Irony and satire, two complex phenomena, find their respective places in the dramatic works of Max Frisch (1911–1991), a Swiss playwright and novelist and have gone through many changes gaining on different meanings, depending on the socio-cultural context, dominant literary and philosophical theories of a certain period of time in which they were analyzed and recognized as such. The aim of this paper is to show that Max Frisch, a 20th century intellectual who witnessed the major political, cultural and social changes of the second half of the 20th century in Europe and worldwide, uses irony and satire for coping with the reality and challenges of the time he lived in. Keywords: Max Frisch, dramatic work, irony, satire, 20th centuryNeutralna pozicija koju je Švicarska imala za vrijeme Drugoga svjetskog rata, a zbog koje je ostala pošteđena ratnih zbivanja te otvorenost klasičnim, ali i suvremenim europskim i svjetskim književnim te kazališnim utjecajima, stvorili su pozitivno ozračje za dobru, aktualnu i suvremenu švicarsku dramsku književnost na njemačkom jeziku nakon 1945. godine čiji predstavnik postaje jedan od najvećih švicarskih književnika, Max Frisch (1911–1991). U svojoj dugogodišnjoj književnoj karijeri Frisch je bio iznimno aktivan kao prozaist, napisavši pet romana, pet pripovijesti te četiri dnevnika, ali i kao dramatičar, ostavivši bogat dramski opus koji broji jedanaest dramskih ostvarenja napisanih između 1945. i 1978. godine. Upravo će Frischove drame biti predmetom ovoga rada, odnosno naglasak će biti na onima koje su se analizom pokazale najreprezentativnijima u cilju dokazivanja postojanja ironije i satire u istima kao mehanizmima suočavanja s izazovima koje je pred čovjeka-intelektualca stavilo 20. stoljeće, ali i kao sredstvima putem kojih Frisch progovara, kritizira i prokazuje besmisao jednog vremena kojemu je i sâm pripadao. ...

Pročitaj cijeli članak →

This paper explores the comic devices in "The Overcoat" by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol in accordance with Boris Eichenbaum’s analysis and his claim that skaz (a type of first-person narrative based on verbal play) has the main role in the structure of Gogol’s short story. The thesis of the paper is that skaz is the basis of humour in the short story and that the semantic aspects of the work are realized by means of the possibilities contained in language itself, which is illustrated through a number of examples. At the same time, the interconnection between certain stylistic devices is brought to attention. By emphasizing the expressive features of words and mimicking the style of conversational speech, the features of both prose and poetry are brought together in Gogol’s work. Therefore, the comic devices in this paper are grouped according to the types of figures of speech which reflect the characteristics of prose and poetry respectively. In addition to that, the reader also has a significant role in creating the illusion of conversational speech and Gogol encourages them to participate actively. The paper concludes that the artistic value and the significance of "The Overcoat" to a greater extent stem from Gogol’s mastery of language use, rather than his intention to create "an illusion of reality" in the fictional world of "The Overcoat"....

Pročitaj cijeli članak →

“Voys Lessons: Whirling Words in Chaucer’s ‘House of Rumour’” examines the lability of sound and its use in the dissemination, transposition, and authorship of stories within The House of Fame, a text exemplifying the mobility and flexibility of misused or unhinged words, as expressed through sound as opposed to text. By engaging the use and interpretation of sound in contrast to words, this new reading concentrates on the idea of narrative as material artifact with limited stasis. Geffrey’s pseudo-authorship, through his voyeuristic stance, engages the textuality of sounds and shows the related subtlety, elasticity, and democratic sociohistorical aspect of narrative construction. Chaucer’s dreamscape and use of authorial characters allows this argument to reposition the mobility and nature of sound, emphasizing its critical importance in the formation and corruption of stories, both written and oral.Keywords: sound, narrative, medieval, authorship, bricolage, authority, transposition, dissemination, context, Chaucer...

Pročitaj cijeli članak →

Flannery O'Connor's short fiction is overrun with female characters that embody the lost and corrupted ideal of the Southern Belle. O'Connor's method of shocking her characters into belief seems to take a harsher and uglier turn when it comes to women and this is particularly relevant to characters that not only renounce their femininity but also lack true spirituality. In this essay I examine three of O'Connor's female protagonists and it is my contention that these three women are emblematic of the decaying myth of the Southern Belle and of its treacherous nature. All three abandon – to some extent – the foundations on which this feminine ideal is based and by doing so essentially reject patriarchal authority. It is important to take into account the fact that their overstated assertiveness is often a result of an inescapable and harsh reality. However, I argue that O'Connor denies these women even a shred of sympathy because for her, rejecting the patriarchal scheme of life is, to a very large extent, a way of rejecting God's authority. While O'Connor criticizes the feminine Southern ideal by showing how oppressive it is towards women and thereby exposes the hypocrisy of the myth, she also uses its duality to validate her wrath towards these women who abandon the feminine ideal – and thus God – only to retrieve and exploit it when it suits them. All three characters project an unreliable, traitorous sense of womanhood and believe they can outsmart God. O'Connor – their creator and punisher – thought otherwise. ...

Pročitaj cijeli članak →