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Title: Fenoglio's binoculars, Johnny's eyes : history, language and narrative technique in Fenoglio's 'Il partigiano Johnny'
Author: Cooke, Philip Edward
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1994
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This thesis centres on the writing of the Peidmontese author Beppe Fenoglio, particularly on the unfinished material which makes up the long Resistance novel known as Il partigiano Johnny. Many critics have tended to devalue the historical aspects of the material, choosing instead to concentrate on 'timeless' qualities. The thesis questions such established critical assumptions by firmly placing the work in its historical, cultural, and linguistic context. The thesis begins with a brief examination of relevant critical material. It then goes on to analyse the dating debate surrounding the texts and argues, in opposition to the editors of the 1978 critical edition of Fenoglio's works, that they were composed in the 1950's. In the next chapter, a model is created of the underlying narrative technique, or what is subsequently termed the 'Deep Structure Rhetoric', that Fenoglio uses in Il partigiano Johnny. This model, captured by the phrase 'Fenoglio's binoculars, Johnny's eyes', both describes and accounts for the way that the author was attempting to reconcile two separate points of view in Il partigiano Johnny: his own 1950's point of view, and that of Johnny, his Resistance protagonist. Two subsequent chapters then examine narrative technique and language isofar as they contribute to the historical dimension of Il partigiano Johnny. The chapter on language is informed by the work of the linguistic critic Roger Fowler, and in particular by his notion of 'mind style'. The final chapter analyses the treatment of certain historical issues in Il partigiano Johnny. The conclusion then argues that the work can be read, following the historical theory of Carlo Ginzburg, as an example of 'microhistory'.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available