Spurred by the ambition of contributing to the re-evaluation of a much under-researched writer, this dissertation hopes to rescue from critical oblivion a number of works published by Alan Sillitoe between 1970 and 1998. The adoption of a composite theoretical framework entwining the different perspectives of Cultural Anthropology, Philosophy, Literary Theory and Performance Studies, has allowed me to analyse Raw Material, A Start in Life, Life Goes On, and The Broken Chariot as works pervasively imbued with liminal concerns. Their preoccupations with identity, marginality and storytelling-as the 'as-if' frame between the real and the imaginary weighing the unreality of the 'secular' world against the truth of a phantasmagorical one-have thus been firmly located in the realm of liminality. The present study argues that the texts chosen for analysis beside problematizing identity as an elusive, unstable and shifty notion, forever suspended between the disintegrative/integrative pull of the self and the unreality of the social persona, between antistructure and structure, also vindicate the sacredness of individuality and diversity in the face of forces that conveniently blunt consciences and legitimize conformism. What fulfils the individual, Sillitoe seems to suggest, is the capacity of the self to dispute, transcend and reshape the categories of society in new rationalizations that affirm its singularity. With the exception of Raw Material, an edgy work occupying the opaque interstice between the cognate provinces of autobiography and fiction, the novels have been foregrounded as performative texts staging rituals of status reversal that challenge the hegemonic power and the arbitrariness of its corrosive divisions-its categorizing of human beings according to preposterous criteria of superiority and inferiority. In all of these texts, moreover, literature and the literary establishment are exposed as domains that connive with power in perpetuating class. This study has also propounded the idea that the above-mentioned works are attempts at self-representations whereby Sillitoe becomes subject and object of his own narration. However temporarily, he thus achieves an otherwise impossible fullness of being that fleshes out the thinking I in the act of the representation.
Scheda prodotto non validato
Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo