Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: http://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.506718
Title: The Canadian Künstlerroman : the creative protagonist in L.M. Montgomery, Alice Munro and Margaret Laurence
Author: Harris, Sian
Awarding Body: Newcastle University
Current Institution: University of Newcastle upon Tyne
Date of Award: 2009
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Abstract:
My thesis is engaged in conceptualising the genre of the Canadian female Kuenstlerroman, and in charting how this genre has been deployed by L.M Montgomery, Alice Munro and Margaret Laurence. This project addresses the implications of Canada's literary identity, as constructed by female authors, and offers a unique perspective on their feminising of the Kuenstlerroman, and the degrees of meta-narrative and autobiography which the use of creative female protagonists entails. This thesis identifies the genre of Canadian female Kuenstlerroman, and explores both its significance in sustaining existing readings, and its potential for generating new interpretations. It is structured into four chapters, as well as a detailed critical introduction. The introduction outlines my understanding of the Kuenstlerroman narrative in conjuncture with Canadian literary identity, as well as offering a brief overview of the three writers considered in this study. Chapter One focuses on the treatment of Canadian landscapes and locations within the texts, considering how the space is gendered, and reinforcing the significance of the texts as explicitly Canadian. Chapter Two examines the presentation of the protagonists' childhoods, and negotiates the nature/nurture debate whilst also identifying the importance of mentor figures in the Kuenstlerroman. Chapter Three charts the protagonists' progression into adult life, and acknowledges the increasingly complex demands made upon them as they attempt to reconcile personal and professional commitments. Chapter Four explores the strong Gothic element that is present in all the texts, and considers how gender and genre combine to destabilise the narrative and regenerate the latent menace of Gothic tropes and traditions. Finally, a brief conclusion evaluates my reading of these texts as Kuenstlerroman narratives and identifies their defining characteristics. Throughout, my thesis maps both the dual construction of the writers' fictional characters and literary careers - driven by both the desire for self-expression and artistic subjectivity - and the meta-fictive and self-referential writing into existence of three national writers. This process is constantly driven by questions of Canadian literary identity and female creativity, and how they combine to produce the persistent and intriguing genre of the Canadian female Kuenstlerroman.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Arts and Humanities Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.506718  DOI: Not available
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