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Constructing Identity

Continuity, Otherness and Revolt in the Poetry of Tony Harrison

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Agata Handley

The author analyzes the multi-layered and multidimensional theme of identity construction recurring in Tony Harrison’s work from the seventies onwards looking at the way it evolved throughout the years. The book examines identity in the frame of the sociological and philosophical thoughts of such thinkers as Emmanuel Levinas and Zygmunt Bauman and in reference to the systematization proposed by Zbigniew Bokszański: identity as a state or process, identity as a continuity or change, and identity as a consequence of conformity or revolt.

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Chapter Four “Half versus half, the enemies within.” Changing Patterns of Revolt in v.

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Chapter Four “Half versus half, the enemies within”

Changing Patterns of Revolt in v.

We know of no people without names, no languages or cultures in which some manner of distinctions between self and other, we and they,218 are not made … Self-knowledge—always a construction no matter how much it feels like a discovery—is never altogether separable from claims to be known in specific ways by others.

(Calhoun 1994: 9–10)

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