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New Physics and the Modern French Novel

An Investigation of Interdisciplinary Discourse


Maureen D. Troiano

This study argues that both science and literature operate out of comparable impulses in their consideration of the nature of truth and the perception of reality. It focuses on central scientific paradigms as they appear in the aesthetics of the French new novel, both to contrast the Newtonian mechanistic, deterministic world-view characteristic of much of nineteenth-century thought with the dominant interest of the twentieth century in indeterminancy, illogic, paradox, and entropy. It describes the new novel as a subjective, probabilistic entity, a new Gestalt/ontological event in which the «re-presentation» of reality becomes a nonabsolute time/space experience occurring simultaneously with the act of reading.