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”Repetition and Metamorphosis in WG Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn”
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Literature.
2009 (English)In: Actual Virtual, ISSN 1752-5624, no 9Article in journal (Other academic) Published
Abstract [en]

Destruction casts its shadows over every new form of existence in W.G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn (1995). Central tendencies in this novel, or collection of historical essays, are those of melancholy, alienation and loss. Several scholars have defined Sebald’s writing as coloured by the effects of Holocaust, exile and loss. The Rings of Saturn, with its repeated descriptions of history’s innumerable cases of devastation and brutal waste, is no exception. Here we have a lonely wanderer at the English east coast, passive and paralysed, repetitively drawn into different memories of terror. But this repetitious journey into the most disastrous events of Western history can also be viewed as an intensified flight. Within the melancholic exhaustion of the alienated wanderer lies a hidden strength, an apocalyptic rejection, a line of flight into a becoming-animal, or becoming-insect. It is a mournful process, but it also captures the potentiality of a life. This paper uses Deleuze to discuss repetition and metamorphosis in W.G. Sebald’s The Rings of Saturn. It shows how the writer’s ‘I’ can be viewed as an indefinite article, a singular and a constant becoming, a line of escape. In this aspect, with Deleuze’s concepts of repetition, eternal return and minor literature, it tries to problematise how literature creates identity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Manchester University: Deleuze Studies. The English Research Institute , 2009. no 9
Keyword [en]
W G Sebald, The Rings of Saturn, Deleuze, repetition
National Category
General Literature Studies
Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-112137OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-112137DiVA: diva2:285027
föredrag publicerat online,se länk ovanAvailable from: 2010-01-10 Created: 2010-01-10 Last updated: 2010-12-17Bibliographically approved

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Båth, Katarina
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