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Fluidity and Solidity in Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Education.
2006 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 points / 15 hpStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

C-paper Abstract

Title: Fluidity and Solidity in Marilynne Robinson’s Housekeeping

Author: Linda Lindqvist

The purpose of this essay is to show that fluidity and solidity constitute a central tension on all levels in Housekeeping, and how this tension leads to a choice of either a fluid or a solid lifestyle and view of the world. I focus on fluidity and solidity in gender roles, in memories, in dreams, in nature, and in different perceptions of reality. By taking a closer look at Ruth’s first-person narration (seeing fluidity as not resisting deformation, while solidity resists deformation), we find that the characters in Housekeeping have fluid and solid traits, but that there is no reality that allows mixed manifestations of these. This results in repression of either fluidity or solidity, which creates tension and feelings of loss. Ruth chooses a fluid lifestyle, thus her memories and dreams become mixed with her present, and this also leads her to become a transient, outside gender roles and traditional small town society. Transience in this novel questions all distinctions conventionally made between dream and reality; male and female. In conclusion, this essay highlights how tension between fluidity and solidity is generated on all levels in Housekeeping, and how this leads to either fluid or solid lifestyles since the characters follow a cultural code that dictates a choice between them.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. , p. 17
Keywords [en]
fluidity, solidity, fluid, solid, identity, loss, memory, dream, gender, transience, feminine, masculine, traditional gender roles
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Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-239OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-239DiVA, id: diva2:5883
Presentation
2006-06-26
Uppsok
humaniora/teologi
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Available from: 2006-06-28 Created: 2006-06-28 Last updated: 2018-01-11

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf