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Sarah: The Historiographer of the Past and the Present of the French Lieutenant’s Woman

Fariba Noorbakhsh orcid id ; No. 31, First Floor, Boostan, Karaj, Iran
Fazel Asadi Amjad ; Kharazmi University, Teheran, Iran

Puni tekst: engleski pdf 166 Kb

str. 211-223

preuzimanja: 1.767



The article argues that Sarah, the title character of Fowles’ novel The French Lieutenant’s Woman (1969), resists the oppressive ideology of her time by writing her own historiography. In the process, not only does she emplot a tragic past for herself but she also insists on being identified as a depraved woman in the present. The analysis attempts to highlight the fact that Sarah, like a historiographer, selects the referents for her historiography—Mrs. Poulteney and Charles—and imposes her emplotment and prefiguration on her historiography of both her past and present. Employing Hayden White’s theories of postmodern historiography and Linda Hutcheon’s concept of historiographic metafiction, the paper illustrates ways in which Sarah historicizes her own past through tragic emplotment and metaphoric prefiguration of her narrative in order to convey her anarchist ideology, at the same time portraying herself as the “Woman” who has been abandoned by the French Lieutenant. Furthermore, by means of her historiography of the present, she imposes her liberal ideology through satiric emplotment of her fictional construct and ironic prefiguration of the referents of textualized oppression in society. She ironically puts Mrs. Poulteney and Charles in the situations in which their oppressive ideology is unraveled; in this way, she satirizes the codes of behavior of her present time.

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