A scrutiny of postmodern themes and narratological devices in "The good soldier" by Ford Madox Ford
MetadataShow full item record
The dissertation emerged from a growing realization that various of the distinctive traits in The Good Soldier could be considered as bearing traces of certain characteristics of Postmodern fiction. The study sets out to scrutinize The Good Soldier for further evidence to support this possibility. The areas that present themselves as specifically promising in this regard concern the issue of epistemology in the novel as well as the use of narratological devices in The Good Soldier. These two issues serve as the main area of focus for the study and are considered for the possible congruencies they demonstrate with Postmodern thought and fictional characteristics. After providing an orientation to the issues of epistemology and narratological devices in the context of Modernism and Postmodernism, the study proceeds to discuss the issue of epistemology in The Good Soldier and its relationship to Postmodern fiction. This involves a discussion of surfaces, simulations, perception, epiphany, history, language and re-enchantment and how these issues are conducive to demonstrating that The Good Soldier bears traces of Postmodern thoughts on knowledge. The use of narratological devices in The Good Soldier are also considered for possible congruencies with Postmodern fiction, specifically regarding the use of narrator, character and chronological sequencing. In this regard the issue of text and intertextuality are discussed and it is discovered that The Good Soldier foregrounds its own status as text through its references to a number of other texts. It is concluded that The Good Soldier does indeed bear traces of a Postmodern epistemology and employs narratological devices plausibly identifiable as Postmodern. The comments on knowledge in The Good Soldier, as well as the use of narrator, character and chronological sequencing are comprehensively elucidated and accounted for in the context of Postmodern epistemology and narratological devices. The Good Soldier is an accepted and well-loved Modernist novel. A study that seeks to scrutinize the text for elements of Postmodernism questions and foregrounds the issue of literary periodization and the division of literary texts on the basis of year of publication and authorship. Demonstrating that The Good Soldier bears traces of Postmodemism through its epistemology and use of narratological devices therefore provides evidence that literary movements are not mutually exclusive and that the traits of one literary period may be beneficial in an elucidation and elaboration of a text belonging to another literary movement.
- Humanities