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An old new story - Vladimir Propps strucuralist analysis applied to Dean Koontz Icebound
2002 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor)Student thesis
Abstract [en]

“In this book I have almost too many ideas. I want to give life and death, sanity and insanity; I want to criticise the social system and to show it at work, in it’s most intense” (Woolf 57). Those words are uttered by Virginia Woolf, one of the ancestors of modern feminism, in her timeless feminist book: A Room Of One´s Own. However, the book she is referring to is Mrs. Dalloway, a novel where her underlying thoughts and opinion’s are possible to distinguish. Reflecting Victorian values, society was divided into two worlds: men ruled over the public world and women dominated the private sphere. My aim of this essay will be to investigate weather the main character of the novel, Clarissa Dalloway, functions as a protest against the Victorian society’s rigid definition of gender roles. By taking a closer look at Clarissa Dalloway and her reflections over life, I will try to illustrate the inequities between men and women; the dislocation of women in their own society, seen from a feminist perspective. I will also discuss the role of the other characters in the novel but this essay will mainly focus on Clarissa Dalloway’s actions and inner thoughts and her feminine role as the perfect hostess. I hope to have highlighted the various examples of the oppression of women in the text and their inferior role against the male dominated society.

Abstract [en]

In Morphology of the Folktale, the Russian formalist Vladimir Propp shows the results of his studying of the Russian folktales. He discovered that the tales contain seven characters and 31 functions. The characters do not have to be real people because the author is completely free in his or her choice of nomenclature and attributes. The author is also free to choose some functions and omit others. Furthermore, the functions do not always follow one another in order. The Russian folktales also contain auxiliary elements such as trebling and motivations. In Theory and History of Folklore, Propp suggests that his way of analysing might be applied to other tales and even to any narrative and my aim in this paper is to examine whether or not Vladimir Propp’s model of analysis can be applied to a modern narrative. Using Icebound by Dean Koontz as my primary source, I examine if it is possible to find Propp’s seven characters, some, or all, of the functions and if there are any auxiliary elements in this modern adventure story. The results of my study show that all of the seven characters in the folktales are present in Icebound and that all, but two, of them are personified. Not only did I discover that many of the functions can be found in Koontz’s story, but also that some are omitted. And the functions do not always follow one another in direct succession. Auxiliary elements, trebling and motivations are employed in the novel. Koontz uses trebling in the entire story and some of the characters are not motivated by their mission; they have their own motivations. By applying Propp’s model of analysis to this modern story, I have shown that the structure Propp found in the Russian folktales is similar to the structure of Icebound. I have also shown that Propp’s method definitely can be applied to a modern narrative.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2002. , 24 p.
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-53682Local ID: ENG C-13OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-53682DiVA: diva2:1102242
Subject / course
English
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29

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