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|Title:||Existentialism and selected contemporary Novels in English|
|Authors:||Cole, Michael G.|
|Keywords:||English;English Language and Literature;English Language and Literature|
|Abstract:||<p>As "an attitude and outlook that emphasises human existence", Existentialism can clearly be related to the concerns of the novel as a genre. This thesis investigates that relationship, suggesting that the contemporary novel contains ideas which are also expressed in existential thought; it also suggests that a knowledge of existential ideas is an important tool for the critic of modern fiction. It has been suggested that this similarity of thought may be explained as "The whole mind of the times... inclining in one direction." Both Existentialism and the contemporary novel can be seen as manifestations of the world viewed in a certain manner. Existentialism is not considered to be separate from modern fiction; concern for the individual forms the essence of both movements.</p> <p>The contemporary novel offers many examples of existential thought. This thesis could not, of course, hope to include all these examples. Certain novels have been referred to on several·occasions because they illustrate more than one existential idea. My contention that Existentialism helps towards an understanding of the contemporary novel is substantiated by this approach. A majority of the novels cited appear on the graduate course which covers contemporary fiction. The following chapters were written with this course in mind; the contemporary novel is linked in this manner because I believe that Existentialism clarifies the thoughts expressed in the novels.</p> <p>The form which the thesis takes is a brief exposition of Existentialism followed by examples of this thought in selected novels. Four of the following chapters deal with ideas in the contemporary novel and the first- chapter is a description of Existentialism. Rather than select a few works I have chosen to use many novels in the belief that it exposes more clearly the main a rgument of this thesis. The presence of existential thought in so many novels is proof, I believe. that a knowledge of Existentialism is necessary for the reader of the contemporary novel. The final section of the work concludes that Existentialism and the contemporary novel should be considered together when the subject is the individual in the present society.</p>|
|Appears in Collections:||Open Access Dissertations and Theses|
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