"Parenthesis" and "The Crossing" Book Review by Ericayani

"Parenthesis" and "The Crossing"
An analysis of the effects of postmodernism and the discursive construction of spaces in "A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters" by Julian Barnes and "Field Study" by Rachel Seiffert.
# 116540 | 924 words | 5 sources | MLA | 2008 | AR
Published on Oct 07, 2009 in Literature (Comparative Literature) , Sociology (General)

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This paper discusses how postmodern writers Julian Barnes and Rachel Seiffert explore the issues of intercultural spaces in their works "A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters" and "Field Study". In particular, the paper looks at how both works are concerned with finding the truth in cultural memory, history and heritage. The paper examines how in the chapter "Parenthesis" from "A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters", Julian Barnes depicts this selective process of values and presents an intracultural negotiation between individuals. In comparison, the paper also examines how in the short story "The Crossing" from "Field Study", Rachel Seiffert also describes the mentioned process but in an intercultural negotiation, symbolized in the relationship between a woman and an enemy of her country during an unspecified war.

From the Paper:

"In The Crossing, we find a representation of "otherness" symbolized in the enemy man who helps the woman and her children. The woman's cultural memory and its corresponding system of conventions and stereotypes place a barrier between her and the man. These presuppositions generated by adhesion to the culture, induce the woman to build a representation of "the other". In this way, she acts according to these mental constructs, by constantly rejecting the help that the man offers to her. Otherness is embodied in the words the woman thinks when she is deciding about the degree of fear that she must feel towards the strange man. First, she classifies the man as "One of us." (FS, 135), but later, when she recognizes him as an enemy of her country, she concludes that he is "One of them." (FS, 145). The relationship between the man and the woman develops parting from these culturally constructed assumptions about "the other". "

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Barnes, Julian. A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters. Picador, 1990
  • Bhabha, Homi. The Location of Culture. London and New York: Routledge, 1995.
  • Hooks, Bell. Yearning: Race, Gender, and Cultural Politics. Boston, MA: South End Press,1990.
  • Seiffert, Rachel. Field Study. Vintage.
  • Soja, Edward W. Thirdspace: Journeys to Los Angeles and Other Real-and-Imagined Places. Massachusetts: Blackwell Ltd., 1996.http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1003&context=clcweb

Cite this Book Review:

APA Format

"Parenthesis" and "The Crossing" (2009, October 07) Retrieved May 27, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/book-review/parenthesis-and-the-crossing-116540/

MLA Format

""Parenthesis" and "The Crossing"" 07 October 2009. Web. 27 May. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/book-review/parenthesis-and-the-crossing-116540/>