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'delicious riot of things': Aspects of discontinuity in "Tristram Shandy"

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Date Issued:
1997
Summary:
Tristram Shandy is a famously formless text in which the "life and opinions" of the title character appear to spill forth from the narrator without a governing theme or structure. Chronology and plot are interrupted and re-ordered. Characters are defined as mere fragments of personality, "strokes of a pen"; objects are represented as broken, snarled, and discombobulated. The subtexts and digressive tales included within the novel are incomplete as well as disruptive of the larger whole. Sterne withholds the "complete" picture a conventional novel provides, and fragmentation becomes the prevailing motif of his book: the author's motley meaning lies hidden in an abundance of disrupted and broken forms. I propose an examination of the multitude of discontinuous forms in Tristram Shandy, seen in narrative structures, characters, objects, and themes. My discussion concludes with discussion of time and mortality--Sterne's final implicit acknowledgment of the links between the novel's theme and form, and the narrator's vain flight from Death.
Title: A 'delicious riot of things': Aspects of discontinuity in "Tristram Shandy".
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Name(s): Gerard, William B.
Florida Atlantic University, Degree grantor
McGuirk, Carol, Thesis advisor
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 1997
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 82 p.
Language(s): English
Summary: Tristram Shandy is a famously formless text in which the "life and opinions" of the title character appear to spill forth from the narrator without a governing theme or structure. Chronology and plot are interrupted and re-ordered. Characters are defined as mere fragments of personality, "strokes of a pen"; objects are represented as broken, snarled, and discombobulated. The subtexts and digressive tales included within the novel are incomplete as well as disruptive of the larger whole. Sterne withholds the "complete" picture a conventional novel provides, and fragmentation becomes the prevailing motif of his book: the author's motley meaning lies hidden in an abundance of disrupted and broken forms. I propose an examination of the multitude of discontinuous forms in Tristram Shandy, seen in narrative structures, characters, objects, and themes. My discussion concludes with discussion of time and mortality--Sterne's final implicit acknowledgment of the links between the novel's theme and form, and the narrator's vain flight from Death.
Identifier: 9780591624984 (isbn), 15497 (digitool), FADT15497 (IID), fau:12261 (fedora)
Collection: FAU Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection
Note(s): Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters
Thesis (M.A.)--Florida Atlantic University, 1997.
Subject(s): Stern, Laurence, 1713-1768.--Life and opinions of Tristram Shandy, gentleman.
Stern, Laurence, 1713-1768--Criticism and interpretation.
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Libraries
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fcla/dt/15497
Sublocation: Digital Library
Use and Reproduction: Copyright © is held by the author, with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Owner Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.