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Nature et fonction du narrateur dans les romans de John Hawkes
Revue française d'études américaines
No. 1 (avril76), pp. 101-114
Published by: Editions Belin
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20872625
Page Count: 14
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In Second Skin, the first word of the novel is a vigorous « I », immediately followed by a process of self definition: « I will tell you in a few words who I am. Before coming to this clear self-assertion it seems that Hawkes' narrator undergoes a series of mutations. The study is specially focused on The Lime Twig, where the identity of the narrator is the result of a measurable progression: an anonymous narrator directly aggresses a fictitious reader who appears in fact as the first character in the book. Then, this narrator openly uses the first person, gradually provoking a curious symbiosis including the fictitious reader and himself. What justification otherwise for such a puzzling confusion as « Mother wipes her lips with your handkerchief. »? This confusion gives birth to a well determined character who acknowledges identity by using an explicit apposition: « I, William Hencher ». In the second chapter, Hencher becomes a conventional character in the third person. A close study of the mechanism of this evolution introduces a series of reflexions concerning the relations between author, narrator and character in Hawkes' fiction.
Revue française d'études américaines © 1976 Editions Belin