Public Schoolboys and Empire: A Politicized Reading of Lord of the Flies
|Keywords:||性別政治;帝國主義;高汀;公校男童小說;public schoolboy stories;imperialism;William Golding;gender politics||Issue Date:||2004||Abstract:||
本論文結合近代英國文學與文化傳統，探折高汀（William Golding）名作《蒼蠅王》中的性別與國族政治面向。此書歷來屢被視為一部呈現普遍人性善惡之作，然其中主人翁之公校男童（public schoolboys），實為英國社會自以十九世紀以來極其重要的菁英典型，在文學作品當中，更往往是該國社會與殖民事業的領袖。本論文試圖論證《蒼蠅王》源出「公校男童小說」次文類，一方面符應其習例與人物塑造模式，一方面也反映了廿世紀大英帝國崩解後的文化與社會關切。
The thesis reads Lord of Flies in the context of modern Britain’s imperial culture and politics. I argue that the figure of public schoolboy appearing in Lord of the Flies ought not be taken hastily as incidental inventions of William Golding, as critics usually do, but rather a crucial icon of would-be national leaders in British literature and popular culture for more than two hundred years. The novel’s shares, substantially, its literary predecessors’ response to British imperialist business. And whereas their Victorian and Edwardian counterparts tend to portray the public schoolboys as triumphant conquerors of nature and men of color around the world, those in Lord of the Flies are to confront incessant challenges and dilemmas, and find themselves seemingly nowhere to move on. It is a public schoolboy story, therefore, not only inseparable to its preceding literary legacy, but also highly reflective of its own times.
The first chapter examines the novel’s indebtedness to the British public schoolboy story tradition, especially main generic conventions and prototypes of boy-heroes. The second chapter scrutinizes the constructions of genders and sexualities in Lord of the Flies, looking into how the contrasting images of gentleman and soldier generate competing discourses of ideal British elites. The third chapter further interrogates the problematics of the rivaling camps in Lord of the Flies as probable leading classes of their nation. Simply put, while those imitative heirs of the British mainstream recurrently find their goal of maintaining a glorious status of their nation out of reach, those who belong to the radical side appear to be more likely to invigorate themselves and realize the same goal but in the meantime risk slanting to savagery, supposedly the antithesis of British civility. Golding’s vision of ideal leaders in postcolonial Britain is split, troubled, indeterminate, and patently self-contradictory.
|Appears in Collections:||外國語文學系|
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