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TRADITION IS BROKEN: ILLEGIBILITY AND AUTHORSHIP IN ELIZABETH BOWEN’S INTERWAR COURTSHIP NOVELS

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Material Information

Title:
TRADITION IS BROKEN: ILLEGIBILITY AND AUTHORSHIP IN ELIZABETH BOWEN’S INTERWAR COURTSHIP NOVELS
Physical Description:
Book
Language:
English
Creator:
Welsh, Taylor
Publisher:
New College of Florida
Place of Publication:
Sarasota, Fla.
Publication Date:

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Bachelor's ( B.A.)
Degree Grantor:
New College of Florida
Degree Divisions:
Humanities
Area of Concentration:
English, Gender Studies
Faculty Sponsor:
Van Tuyl, Jocelyn

Subjects

Genre:
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, territorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract:
This thesis examines how two of Elizabeth Bowen’s 1930s novels explore changing conduct conventions through experimental narrative strategies. In To the North (1932) and The House in Paris (1934), Bowen presents baffling new social expectations for women in post-World War One Britain through tropes of legibility and authorship. Her heroines engage with unstable conduct codes and subvert formulaic courtship plots through motifs of textuality that involve “reading” and “writing” their social milieus. Following an introduction that outlines the unclear expectations wrought by rapidly evolving social, economic, and political roles for interwar women, the first chapter examines social legibility as a problem of readership in To the North. This chapter examines how difficulties navigating interwar gender conventions manifest through problems of expression, relation, and articulation on the level of plot. It also demonstrates how illegible social codes are focalized through the characters’ relationships to modern spaces of transit that alternately allow for and constrain narrative and romantic possibility. The second chapter positions social illegibility in The House in Paris as an issue of authorship and voice that surfaces on the level of both plot and structure. It examines textual questions of representation by exploring the novel’s literarily selfconscious style and its presentation of a problematized female subjectivity and narrative voice. Bowen’s interwar fiction is an apt example of literature responding to social changes. Thematic and structural elements of these two novels illustrate a larger dynamic of cultural instability and ambiguity inherent to the plight of British female experience between the world wars.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Taylor Welsh
Thesis:
Thesis (B.A.) -- New College of Florida, 2014
General Note:
RESTRICTED TO NCF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
General Note:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The New College of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
General Note:
Faculty Sponsor: Welsh, Taylor

Record Information

Source Institution:
New College of Florida
Holding Location:
New College of Florida
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
Classification:
S.T. 2014 W457
System ID:
AA00024830:00001

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