Papadiamantis’ Athenian short stories: social representation and characterization

Lefaki, Maria (2010). Papadiamantis’ Athenian short stories: social representation and characterization. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.


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As a contribution to the re-evaluation of Papadiamantis’ literary oeuvre this thesis sets out to explore the social dimension of his work by focusing on his Athenian short stories. This literary corpus, a significant part of the literature describing the urban environment in the last decade of the nineteenth and the first decade of the twentieth century, offers an insight into Papadiamantis’ views on the social reality of the Greek capital and society at large. The first chapter outlines the socio-historical parameters that contributed to the increasing presence of Athens in Greek prose fiction of that period and explores the ways different urban narratives sought to record the changing physiognomy of the capital. The second and third chapters focus on the texts and provide a close reading of the Athenian stories. In particular, the second chapter concentrates on the social context and brings to the fore the complex range of social ills that the author wishes to stigmatize either explicitly or implicitly. The third chapter centres on the characters in the Athenian short stories and demonstrates how the urban social context moulds the individual’s character and victimizes the most vulnerable social members. The critical representation of the capital in the Athenian short stories points to Papadiamantis’ scepticism about the emerging norms of modern existence and reveals a socially conscious author.

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 History and Cultures, Department of Classics, Ancient History and Archaeology (CAHA)
Funders: Other
Other Funders: A.G. Leventis Foundation
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN0080 Criticism
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
P Language and Literature > PB Modern European Languages


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