The dichotomy of love and death in the fictional work of Teolinda Gersão

Bozkurt, Suzan (2011). The dichotomy of love and death in the fictional work of Teolinda Gersão. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.


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In this present analysis into the work of the contemporary Portuguese author Teolinda Gersão the metaphorical use of Death in her novels emerges as fulfilling a dual function; firstly as political, societal and linguistic non-representation, on the one hand, and, secondly, as a means of transgressing conventions of time, space and linguistic signification on the other. Death in her novels O Silêncio, Paisagem com Mulher e Mar ao Fundo, O Cavalo de Sol, and A Árvore das Palavras is constituted by a patriarchal and bourgeois hegemony, that allows only spaces of political, societal and linguistic non-existence for the women protagonists. Whereas in A Casa da Cabeça de Cavalo the very foundations of rationality grounded in the values of bourgeois society are transgressed, as parameters of space and time become fluid. In the transitional spaces of love, which are concrete geographical locations, but also modes of resistance within the female psyche, her female protagonists Lídia, Hortense, Vitória, Maria Badala, and Gita find a way of subverting existing cultural and societal norms in order to establish a female self that would not submit to the objectifying mimicry inherent in the patriarchal bourgeois conception of femininity.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of Languages, Cultures, Art History and Music, Department of Modern Languages
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PQ Romance literatures


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