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  • 1.
    Färnlöf, Hans
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Romance Studies and Classics.
    La place du déplacement: réflexions sur la dimension mythique du Colonel Chabert2019In: Australian journal of French studies, ISSN 0004-9468, E-ISSN 2046-2913, Vol. 56, no 3, p. 287-306Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The place of displacement: reflections on the mythical dimension of Colonel Chabert

    This study explores the poetical function of the mythical dimension in the short novel Le Colonel Chabert (1832) by Balzac. The mythical layer is clearly noticeable on the plot level (a hero returns from the war and reclaims his title, his possessions, and his wife) and in a modern version of a catabasis (the colonel is unintentionally buried in a mass grave). Although there are clear connexions to the classical treatment of these elements, the narrative presents a distorted and degraded version of them. Seen in the light of the evolution of Balzac towards becoming a writer who depicts the contemporary society, this displacement of the mythical dimension is interpreted as a way to disqualify, by defective imitation, a henceforth imperfect fictive model for representing reality as it is.

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