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Narrative and Space

Across Short Story Landscapes and Regional Places

Alda Correia

These eight texts deal with different perspectives on the relation between the regional short story, modernism and space. Seven of them concentrate on short prose (the short story and chronicle) and one deals with the novel. Four of them consider canonical pre-modernist and modernist Anglo-American authors and the other four Portuguese rustic and modernist short story writers. Their common point of departure is the notion that the representation of the world cannot be separated from its spatial context, and the effort to understand how space and landscape influenced the structure of narratives and were represented in some of them, mainly in short fiction. They draw attention to the importance of the underestimated regionalist short prose narratives, essentially from a comparative literary perspective, but also considering certain aspects of their social and cultural connections and dissonances.

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1. Virginia Woolf and Heidegger – Creating and Interpreting the World

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1.  Virginia Woolf and Heidegger – Creating and Interpreting the World

The search for philosophical influence on Virginia Woolf’s work has centred on phenomenology. Jean Guiguet’s Virginia Woolf and her Works (1962), a Sartrean reading of some works of the author, launched a series of studies as Howard Harper’s Between Language and Silence (1982), which tries to identify Woolf’s “creative consciousness” as expressed in her writing, and Harvena Richter’s Virginia Woolf – The Inward Voyage (1970), which moves into the area of philosophical psychology, discussing perception and feeling. Another group of studies analyses repetition or recurrence, her construction of meaning or the presentation of time, as Ricoeur’s Temps et Récit (1983–85). Mark Hussey’s The Singing of the Real World considers the philosophy of her writing from the point of view of the experience of the world and “inner space” (Hussey, 1986). Recently, the echo of Heidegger in Woolf has been studied in more detail: Wakefield’s “Mrs. Dalloway existential temporality” (Wakefield, 2013) argues that the depiction of time in Woolf is Heideggerian rather than Bergsonian; Emma Simone’s “Virginia Woolf – Sensations, Moods and the Everyday” (Simone, 2009) relates Heidegger’s concept of Angst with the revelation of essential aspects of being, in Woolf’s characters; Nussbaum in “The Window: Knowledge of Other Minds in V. Woolf’s To the Lighthouse (1995) defends that the approach (by Woolf) of the problem of other minds is made not only by overt statements inside the text, but also by the form of...

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