Réflexions théoriques et études de cas
Edited By Britta Benert
Aucun ouvrage existant n’est vraiment centré sur ce tournant du siècle, moment où la doxa de pureté de la langue et les esprits nationalistes tendent à promouvoir, voire à imposer l’idéal du monolinguisme et où, parallèlement, persiste à travers l’Europe et le monde un nombre important de situations et d’expérimentations diverses à contre-courant du monolinguisme puriste.
Fruit d’un colloque qui s’est tenu dans le cadre du XX
Case Studies of Literary Multilingualism. Expressing Alterity in a Self-Referential Recourse to the Motif of the Double
← 170 | 171 → Case Studies of Literary Multilingualism
Expressing Alterity in a Self-Referential Recourse to the Motif of the Double1
CECC / Universidade Aberta (Portugal)
Many authors such as Chamisso, Conrad, Kafka, Rilke, Andreas-Salomé and Pessoa grew up bi- or multilingual, or lived in linguistically and culturally hybrid regions. Several of these writers have fictionalized their cultural encounters not only in their ‘mother-tongue’, but in the language of their region’s socially dominant population or in their host country’s language. Some have successfully translated their own works, thus gaining a valuable awareness of themselves and of the host culture.
My contribution focuses on the common tendency of these authors to develop new concepts of the self, by exploring the frontiers of alterity. In a social context, which is often experienced as uncomfortable, or even threatening, the strangeness of their literary characters, frequently expresses itself in a double- or hetero-social consciousness, articulated in the same narrative. In this creative process, fantasies of fragmentation take the shape of the ‘other’, double selves and heteronyms.
In my essay “Fantasies of Fragmentation in Conrad, Kafka and Pessoa: literary strategies to express strangeness in a hetero-social context” (Bär, 2011) of which some parts are quoted here, I have already presented three case studies to illustrate this thesis. In the following I will demonstrate how the literary motif of the ‘Doppelgänger’ was used by other bi- or multilingual...
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