Skuldkänslans broderskap. En bok om Peder Sjögrens romaner
1996 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
This doctoral thesis deals with Peder SjögrenÕs (19051966) seven novels. By means of modern narratological instruments and with the emphasis laid on the thematic functions of the narrators, a central theme in SjögrenÕs writing is uncovered. In all of SjögrenÕs works the characters are tied together in a sense of guilt that is so strong that the fellowship goes to the point of identification. Sjögren explores this theme by experimenting with different narrative techniques and by using a language with religious connotations.
The narrators in SjögrenÕs novels are engaged in existential projects; their functions are self-explorative, confessional and accusatory rather than communicative. In the analyses, analogies between Freudian psychoanalysis and the narrative situations in SjögrenÕs novels are pointed out. The self-reflexive mirror is a prevalent metaphor in SjögrenÕs writing, descriptive not only of the general structure of the novels but also of the ambivalent relationship between the characters. The metaphor of the mirror is interpreted both as a symbol of narcissistic escapism and of inevitable interdependence, a complicated relationship between a self-destructive tormentor and a god-like, aggressive and powerful victim. Intertextual links are established with texts by writers who were influential on the literary scene in the 1940s, especially Stig Dagerman and Jean-Paul Sartre. The religious language and the Christian metaphors are interpreted in an existentialist and a phenomenological context.
In a post-communicative reflection on the theme of the brotherhood of guilt, the thesis shows how SjögrenÕs theme of guilt and identification invites a comparison with Emanuel LévinasÕs moral philosophy. In a final chapter striking similarities between the two writers are pointed out. Both writers find a structural analogy between the sacred encounter with the wounded face of the Other and the authentic encounter with death, and both writers interpret the moral responsibility for the Other as an obligation to be oneÕs brotherÕs keeper to the point of substitution
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Carlssons , 1996.
General Literature Studies
Research subject Comparative Literature
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-23595OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-23595DiVA: diva2:597355