martedì 17 gennaio 2017

Francesca Mastracci: Hostipitality and Marginality in Conrad (Merope n. 65 - pp. 57-70)

Francesca Mastracci 
Hostipitality and Marginality 
in Joseph Conrad’s Autobiographical Writings 

Abstract — The aim of this paper is to interpret Joseph Conrad’s autobiographical writings using the notion of ‘hostipitality’, first introduced by the French philosopher Jaques Derrida in his 1999 essay “Hostipitalité” to refer to the disturbing etymological proximity between the words ‘hospitality’ and ‘hostility’. I intend to retrace in The Mirror of the Sea, A Personal Record and Notes on Life and Letters the complexities engendered by Conrad’s attempts to react through these texts to the condition of marginality he experienced in life. Starting from Conrad’s definition of himself as something more than a homo duplex, this paper argues that the construction of the author’s identity is based on the desire of being free from any bound, and how this inevitably led him to experience a sentiment of marginality. Finally, adopted by both the community of seamen and the community of writers, he never really felt at home anywhere, always considering himself a “foreign host”. The sense of socio-cultural marginality Conrad experienced in life, and that emerges throughout his texts is to be considered the actual essence that contributed to the definition of himself as a ‘transnational’ writer, feeding his sense of Identity with displacement and lack of belonging. 

Keywords: Joseph Conrad, autobiography, hostipitality, transnational, exile

Nessun commento:

Posta un commento