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Berättelser från diktaturen - Alienation i två romaner av Herta Müller: En litteratursociologisk studie efter Melvin Seemans teori
University of Borås, Faculty of Librarianship, Information, Education and IT.
2015 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Stories from the Dictatorship - Alienation in two novels by Herta Müller : A literary sociological analysis after Melvin Seeman’s theory (English)
Abstract [en]

This master thesis aims to identify and interpret alienation-related situations in two novels by the German-Romanian author Herta Müller, "The Land of Green plums" (Herztier) and ''The Appointment" (Heute wär ich mir nicht lieber begegnet). The events presented in the novels take place during the time of the communist dictatorship of Nicolae Ceausescu in Romania, with some references to the time before the Second World War. Alienation is considered a central theme in both novels. The thesis uses the six dimensions of alienation as described by the American sociologist Melvin Seeman (University of California), and is based on the following research questions: 1) What literary descriptions of alienation-related situations can be found in Herta Müller’s two novels?; and 2) How do these literary descriptions emphasize the concept of alienation as defined in Melvin Seeman’s theory? In analyzing the novels, two aspects were taken into account: 1) what kind of society the protagonist lives in; and 2) what types of situations highlight the protagonist’s alienation. The process of identification and evaluation of texts describing alienation-related situations are based on a mixed method of thematic and biographic text analysis. The method of interpreting a written text rest on hermeneutics as described by Hans Georg Gadamer. The thesis identifies several descriptions of alienation-related situations in both novels. These situations are all various expressions of the protagonists’ experiences of living in a non-democratic society. Most of them relate to extreme situations causing fear and anxiety to the protagonists. The thesis studies the relationship between protagonists and society. The protagonists describe not only their own police interrogations, but also those of their friends. Alienation is also represented in the childhood memories of the protagonists.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Magisteruppsats i biblioteks- och informationsvetenskap vid institutionen Biblioteks- och informationsvetenskap, ISSN 1654-0247 ; 2015:6
Keyword [sv]
alienationsteori, litteratursociologi, tematisk textanalys, biografisk textanalys, Herta Müller, vittneslitteratur
National Category
Information Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-851OAI: diva2:858500
Subject / course
Library and Information Science
Social and Behavioural Science, Law
Available from: 2015-10-07 Created: 2015-10-02 Last updated: 2015-10-07Bibliographically approved

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Faculty of Librarianship, Information, Education and IT
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