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Title:A Vanishing Act: Gulag Narratives and Their Afterlife
Author(s):Popescu-Sandu, Oana Agnes
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Murav, Harriet
Department / Program:Comparative and World Literature
Discipline:Comparative and World Literature
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Literature, Comparative
Literature, Slavic and East European
Abstract:A Vanishing Act: Gulag Narratives and Their Afterlife examines the crucial role Gulag narratives play in the reexamination of the communist past in Russia, Romania, and Bulgaria but also the way in which they contribute to the emergence of a new prescriptive (meta)language for describing that past in the post-communist period. My analysis of Gulag writings created in the specific social and political circumstances in Russia, Bulgaria and Romania, particularly foregrounds the role of women's writing and of the work that breaks the formal boundaries of the genre in order to express the traumatic experience of imprisonment. Moreover, through the paradigm of forgetting, I argue that the past was overlooked by a misleading political focus on the future, by the persistent use of the structures of communist discourse and by the refusal of the post-communist consciousness to fully access the traumatic but constitutive kernel of its reality. I emphasize that even the groups most invested in reevaluating the past inadvertently confined the discussion to a moralizing discourse, which crystallized itself in a new regulatory language.
Issue Date:2009
Description:185 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2009.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI3363055
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-17
Date Deposited:2009

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