"In unsentimental prose and with sharp wit, Canadian-born Mavis Gallant portrays the isolation, fear, and detachment that afflict rootless North American and European expatriates. Gallant's challenging stories require her readers' active participation; unless they add their own building blocks, the stories will not stand. Danielle Schaub discusses Gallant's disconcerting use of techniques and their impact on her work's thematics, reconciling the inherent tension governing the lives of Gallant's characters and the way she strains language and exploits narrative devices to translate it. Social, political, and historical issues treated in Gallant's work are discussed in relation to the techniques used, making it easier for readers to understand the largely European context of the stories."--Jacket.
Life as exile -- Distance and disharmony: The other Paris and My heart is broken -- Multivoiced narration and historiographic discourse: The Pegnitz junction -- Structural patterns of disjunction: Green water, green sky, A fairly good time, and The end of the world -- Ironic markers of disintegration: From the fifteenth district -- Spatial patterns of displacement: Home truths -- Text and image: Overhead in a balloon -- Stylistic reflection of tension: In transit -- Elegy and intimacy: Across the bridge -- Conclusion: fictional worlds of disintegration
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