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Une écriture de combat : Fiction et politique dans l'entre-deux-guerres aux États-Unis : John Dos Passos (1920-1938)

Abstract : The novels of John Dos Passos [1896-1970] are often analyzed with reference to his politics. This dissertation aims to recast the link between politics and fiction in his work, starting from the texts themselves rather than from the author’s political pronouncements, to see how fiction itself can become political. Dos Passos’s political criticism built up progressively throughout his career, from his early fiction to the crowning success of U.S.A., and rested on a criticism of linear narrative. He went against America’s “manifest destiny” to portray a divided country, made up of “two nations", and rooted his political criticism within the genre of the novel itself. By undermining the concepts of plot, protagonist and temporality, he created a form of political fiction where politics are an integral part of writing, rather than an imposition upon it. Dos Passos thus invites us to cast a new glance at the interwar period, and at the links – severed by Cold War criticism – between modernism and radicalism. His works bear witness to the difficulty of writing protest in a land of consensus; however, rather than resorting to a tempting return to the myth of origins, they enact a dialogue with the founding texts, through which fiction progressively reveals how the nation’s political – and textual – foundation rests on gaps and omissions
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Submitted on : Thursday, November 8, 2012 - 4:42:19 PM
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Alice Béja. Une écriture de combat : Fiction et politique dans l'entre-deux-guerres aux États-Unis : John Dos Passos (1920-1938). Littératures. Université de la Sorbonne nouvelle - Paris III, 2010. Français. ⟨NNT : 2010PA030108⟩. ⟨tel-00749963⟩



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