L'acte de lecture dans l'œuvre d'Edogawa Ranpo (1984-1965) : une réflexion sur la littérature policière d'avant-guerre au Japon

Abstract : Edogawa Ranpo is considered the founder of modern Japanese detective fiction. His original style, which seems to include the reader in the text by using different narrative systems, appears as the major reason for Edogawa Ranpo's continued success since the twenties. The analysis of the reader's status and of the intertextual representation of the act of reading is the main point of this thesis. This study first situates Edogawa Ranpo's works in their historical and editorial context and thus draws the common ground shared by the readers of detective novels in Japan. Then it examines through his programmatic works, a collection of short stories called The Psychological Test, the reader's contract which he establishes in the mid twenties. From the variety of his stories, emerges a clear intention to propose texts that are always on the edge of the genre, with a preference for a format that emphasizes a direct relationship with the reader and takes the form of numerous appeals to the reader. The originality of these short stories is settled when Edogawa Ranpo begins writing detective novels serialized in popular magazines. In this new scheme, he echoed to the reader the image of a voyeuristic reading, marked by a formal monstrosity, through a fantastic story and thanks to techniques of mise en abyme and to the refusal of the referential illusion. The reader, young or adult, is constantly challenged, reminded of his status. At the same time, he must accept a reading contract that focuses on the narrative and not on the story. Ranpo uses all means of intertextuality to provide the reader with a generic knowledge about the detective story while, at the same time, he places him in a spectator position (what is here defined as a "spectacularization" of the reading act). The analogy of narrative systems of Edogawa Ranpo's texts with those of popular entertainment (panorama, rakugo, silent film), with an extensive use of comments, coupled with the self-reflexivity specular effect, makes Ranpo's works an example of metafiction based on paraliterary reading patterns.
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Gerald Peloux. L'acte de lecture dans l'œuvre d'Edogawa Ranpo (1984-1965) : une réflexion sur la littérature policière d'avant-guerre au Japon. Littératures. Université Paris-Diderot - Paris VII, 2012. Français. ⟨tel-00947362⟩

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