Post-Holocaust Interactions : Means of Defamiliarising Reality in Raymond Federman’s 'The Voice in the Closet'

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Interactions. 2013, 22(1/2), pp. 13-30. ISSN 1300-574X
Zusammenfassung

In this article I explore Raymond Federman’s Post-Holocaust narrative 'The Voice in the Closet' from the perspective of Viktor Shkovsky’s formalist theory of “defamiliarization of reality”. I argue that the dissolution of language and syntax, along with structural disorder and issues of perspective such as blended, almost undistinguishable narrative voices, contribute to deconstruct the trauma of survivorship and work towards comprehension and healing. These extreme formal strategies challenge the reader to actively participate in an innovative, albeit controversial type of literariness, which uses paradox, absurdity, repetition and specific symbolism as further means to defamiliarise and re-order cataclysmic events. Additionally, I contend that the metatextual approach involved in the process of fictionalising lived experience fuels the debate related to the abstractisation of memory and to the legitimacy of rewriting memory into autobiographic fiction. I also maintain that the interaction of the child survivor’s narrative voice with that of the adult narrator’s autobiographic ruminations speaks for the post-traumatic splitting of the self, which also functions as a de-habituation of the reader from mainstream perceptions of survivorship.

Zusammenfassung in einer weiteren Sprache
Fachgebiet (DDC)
800 Literatur, Rhetorik, Literaturwissenschaft
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Post-Holocaust Trauma, Holocaust Child-survivor, Deconstruction, Metatextuality, Postmodern Fiction, Narrative Dialogism and Defamiliarisation of Reality
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ISO 690BOTEZ, Catalina, 2013. Post-Holocaust Interactions : Means of Defamiliarising Reality in Raymond Federman’s 'The Voice in the Closet'. In: Interactions. 2013, 22(1/2), pp. 13-30. ISSN 1300-574X
BibTex
@article{Botez2013PostH-25159,
  year={2013},
  title={Post-Holocaust Interactions : Means of Defamiliarising Reality in Raymond Federman’s 'The Voice in the Closet'},
  number={1/2},
  volume={22},
  issn={1300-574X},
  journal={Interactions},
  pages={13--30},
  author={Botez, Catalina}
}
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