Type de document :Thèse de doctorat / mémoire de maîtrise
Résumé / commentaire :
« This dissertation treats the revisionist historical fiction of four writers from the Americas: Alejo Carpentier (Cuba), Leslie Marmon Silko (U.S.), Elena Poniatowska (Mexico), and Patrick Chamoiseau (Martinique). In analyzing their historical novels, I explore three related elements : (1) the incorporation of oral traditions and oral storytelling into the written text, (2) the organic relationship between orality and place in terms of both form (how the stories are told) and content (the stories being told), and (3) the promotion of communal experience and cultural identity that results from the conscious incorporation of orality and place into historical fiction. The work of Carpentier, Silko, Poniatowska, and Chamoiseau reveals a complementary relationship between orality and the narrative construction of place that presents an alternative worldview and understanding of history, literature, and experience. It also validates orality and place as alternative sources for cultural history and knowledge. These authors use orality to rewrite history, transform the novel--re-infusing it with the oral-dialogic qualities of storytelling--and reclaim place in both real and imagined ways for the subaltern communities whose stories they retell. In a broader sense, these novels' (hi)stories of contested spaces and struggles for land rights, the loss and/or acquisition of property, reservations, plantations, and marginal dwellings (slums, squatter settlements) reveal the lasting effects of colonization and modernization on many primarily oral communities in the Americas.
My first chapter introduces the theoretical foundations behind my overall analysis. I primarily draw on the work of Edouard Glissant, Angel Rama, and Native American theorists, but also incorporate the work of Walter Benjamin and Mikhail Bakhtin. I explore connections between the concepts of "hybridity," "transculturation," and " créolité ," emphasizing the last term as a link between the texts at stake, which I discuss as "collective novels of historical becoming." The second chapter considers Carpentier's Ecue-Yamba-O and El reino de este mundo, the third focuses on Silko's Almanac of the Dead, and the fourth compares Poniatowska's Hasta no verte Jesús mío and Chamoiseau's Texaco. These "fictional" (sub)versions counter dominant historical discourse and propose new ways of keeping history that derive from oral and land-based cultures on the margins. » (résumé joint à la thèse)
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