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A Comparative Analysis in Fiction. D. De Foe’s Robinson Crusoe. J. Coetzee’s Foe. IDENTITY AND GENDER IN LITERATURE. An Intertextual Reading From Robinson to Foe Una lettura intertestuale Da Robinson a Foe. NOVEL. Robinson. Susan. Robinson Crusoe 18th century. Foe

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identity and gender in literature
IDENTITYAND GENDER IN LITERATURE
  • An Intertextual Reading
  • From Robinson to Foe
  • Una lettura intertestuale
  • Da Robinson a Foe

NOVEL

Robinson

Susan

a silent dialogue in fiction
Robinson Crusoe

18th century

Foe

20ieth century

A silent dialogue in fiction

YEAR

1719

1986

guidelines
Guidelines

Narrative conventions compared

  • Narrative technique/s
  • Use of language
  • Style
  • Tone
  • Gender

Overall effect

S

I

M

I

L A

R

I

T

I

E

S

D

I

F

F

E

R

N

C

E

S

+

Robinson Crusoe

=

Foe

_

narrative techniques
NARRATOR

1st person narrator

a man, called

Robinson Crusoe

the protagonist of the story

the stereotype of a colonialist

NARRATOR/S

1st person narrator

a woman, called Susan Barton

the protagonist of the story

thesymbolof

marginalization

Narrative Techniques

How has the reader’s response changed?

Multiple perspectives ofa situation/case/reality

stylistic choices
Robinson Crusoe

the novel starts with the introduction of Robinson Crusoe’s social background

storyline develops through all the book

the technique of telling is privileged

the novel adopts the format of the diary

the novel is organized into twenty-six chapters

there is a realistic description of events

Foe

the novel starts in medias res

storyline is restricted to the first chapter

Susan uses both the technique of showing and the technique of telling

there are different kinds of narration (telling, letters, showing, …

the novel is organized into 4 chapters

Language recalling poetry→alliterations and anaphors

there are a lot of exotic elements

in the second chapter Susan uses formal language

chapters 2-3-4 reflect on truth and writing

STYLISTIC CHOICES

Chapters

4

26

what does foe mean the relevance of a title
What does Foe mean?The relevance of a title

Why this title?

The word “Foe” is :

  • an obsolete word
  • means “adversary” and “enemy”
  • is short and sticks in the mind
  • is a carrier of meaning
  • recalls the name ofCrusoe’s novelist, Daniel De Foe
  • is a secret man
  • Susan asked him to write her story

Etymology

Webliography: http://www.wordreference.com/FOE: adversary; rival

Webliography: http://www.allwords.com/FOE: abbreviation of friends of the Earth

Webliography: http://www.allwords.com/FOE: Anglo-Saxon fah hostile.

?

Foe

writer

different fictional aims
The classical version

Robinson’s narrator privileges actions

Accurate and detailed description of reality

The reader is asked to create a mental picture of facts and actions

Defoe’s concern for Realism

Coetzee’s version

Susan privileges emotions

The reader is emotionally involved

The narrator often addresses her words to the reader, expresses her emotions

Different fictional aims

?

Truth

Truths

man truth rationality concreteness woman truths emotions sympathy
In Robinson’s writing

a realistic style of narration

to provide the illusion of authenticity through fictional material

Mystery wraps up any moment of the protagonist’s existence

There is a contrast between Cruso and Susan’ features

Susan has a controversial attitude towards Crusoe

(II Chapter) intimate atmosphere: Susan and Foe find a personal relationship

MAN = Truth  Rationality, ConcretenessWoman = Truths  Emotions, Sympathy

In Susan’s narration

GENDER

Fiction

cannot tell the truth

M

W

a different friday
A DIFFERENT FRIDAY

Friday

  • He is a black man and a servant→Robinson
  • He can’t speak because he doesn’t have a tongue → Foe
  • The importance of his mouth → it hides the truth
  • Friday → the hidden problem of racism represented
  • Friday → lack of identity: unable to speak and tell what really happend

He is deprived of a language of his own

He is not provided with

EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES

A video

OFFLINE EOFFLINE I

De Foe

Coetzee

Friday

Robin

Foe

the problem of language
The problem of language

… wants to underline the writer’s intentions (John Coetzee’s)

  • focus no longer on what has been told

but rather

  • on how and from whose perspective it is being told!

SUSAN

  • is worried … she is not sure she will be able to tell the truth about the adventure she is living.
  • Foe, the teller, expresses frequent doubts as for fiction being able to tell reality.

ROBINSON

  • is sure about reality: he writes as to make the reader visualize the island with all the details he adopts

Voice

tongue

ex

pression

the classical novel
The Classical Novel
  • Strong sense of concreteness
  • Self-assured male character
  • Worried with REALITY
  • Marginalized position of character perceived as ALTER/DIFFERENT
  • Male narrator
  • Hevily relies on factual vison of things
  • Myth of Western society
  • Mutual ignorance of each other language

NO INTERCULTURAL DIALOGUE

or

EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES

18th

male

NoAlter

the postmodern and postcolonial novel
The Postmodern and Postcolonial Novel

Silently interacts with the past  intertextuality

Sense of relativity of experience

Does not believe in unique TRUTH

Adopts different points of view  truths

Privileges INCLUSION

Fights MARGINALIZATION

Appreciates the added value of difference and MULTIPLE IDENTITIES

Considers MULTILINGUALISM a requisite for the construction and expression of IDENTITY and DIGNITY

languages and cultural polyphony

key competences (Education for All) for

sustainable human development

OUR CONCLUSIONS

Who is speaking to me

POST

BEFORE

AFTER