The treatment of escape and conservatism in Naipaul's fictional works
Kyunguti, Patrick N
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This study investigates the portrayal of escape and conservatism in Naipaul's selected works. It further seeks to examine the author's employment of satire as a crystallization of his regenerative quests and lastly, to evaluate the gender responsiveness of his texts. Guided by the sociological theory of literature and stylistic criticism, the study examines the author's biographical data and his creative output. A confluence is noted between his literary constructs and his personal experiences. He has fictionalised real situations, real people and real incidents from his own life. The study goes on to elucidate the author's treatment of escape and conservatism and their relation to human progress. While escape, it is revealed, is portrayed from varying perspectives as a condition for and at the same time an impediment to progress, conservatism is treated marginally as an antithesis to the survival and continuity of a society. An examination of the author's presentation of women characters alongside men reveals that the former are, to a large extent, portrayed as more escapist and conservative than their male counterparts. The analysis of satire in the texts shows that Naipaul has realized this device through unique linguistic strategies which have enabled him to effectively integrate his pedagogical motives with his inimical sense of humour. This study concludes by arguing that the author's selected works are socially regenerative. He has an affirmative social vision which finds expression in his adoption of satire, a mechanism of exposure. However, as a male focaliser, Naipaul has subscribed to a phallocentric ideology in his delineation of gender roles and images.
CitationKyunguti, P. N.(2007). The treatment of escape and conservatism in Naipaul's fictional works
SponsorhipUniversity of Nairobi
Department of Literature, University of Nairobi
MA - Thesis