(Re) Writing the Island Cartographies of desire in Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, J. M. Coetzee's Foe, Jane Gardam's Crusoe's Daughter and Julieta Campos' The Fear of Losing Eurydice & A Novel, Bodeg

Redd, Danielle (2018) (Re) Writing the Island Cartographies of desire in Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe, J. M. Coetzee's Foe, Jane Gardam's Crusoe's Daughter and Julieta Campos' The Fear of Losing Eurydice & A Novel, Bodeg. Doctoral thesis, University of East Anglia.

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Abstract

This thesis writes back against the representation of the island in colonial discourse as a tabula rasa, easily possessed and inscribed. In colonial narratives island possession also emerges as explicitly gendered: the male castaway seeks to control the permissive, feminised territory of the island. It is this interpretation of the island, this gendered process of possession and inscription, that my thesis interrogates and subverts.
My critical thesis is an analysis of Robinson Crusoe and three of its revisionary texts –– J M Coetzee’s Foe, Jane Gardam’s Crusoe’s Daughter and Julieta Campos’ The Fear of Losing Eurydice. I conduct a ‘ground-clearing’ exercise of Robinson Crusoe, critically remapping the island from a tabula rasa to an embodied construction of appetite and desire. My analysis of Foe and Crusoe’s Daughter explores how the texts’ women protagonists navigate the masculine terrain of Crusoe’s island, and how their authors negotiate an intertextual relationship with Robinson Crusoe. My analysis of The Fear of Losing Eurydice shows how Campos draws upon a discourse of desire to delegitimise linear narratives of colonial island possession. The desire for the island becomes a call uttered across multiple times and spaces, leading to Campos’ creation of the ‘archipelago of desire’; a motif which remaps Western insular cartographies to stress the relationality between the Caribbean, Asia, Europe, and Africa. I trace these cartographies of desire, charting the ways in which these novels disturb the terrain, and transgress the boundaries of Crusoe’s island.
My novel, Bodeg, is set on a fictional island in the Arctic circle. Remote, desolate, bubbling with a molten undercurrent of menace, Bodeg is a volcanic island which has claimed the lives and minds of travellers. The novel follows Rebecca and her adult twins, Anna and Daniel, who visit the island. Rebecca is retracing the steps of an old love, Jake, whilst Anna seeks respite from a stale marriage. Daniel suffers from a mental health disorder that causes aural and visual hallucinations. Soon he becomes convinced the island is talking to him – that he understands Bodeg in a way nobody else can. But his sister and mother are too caught up in their own problems to notice. Rebecca’s search for answers produces only more questions. Meanwhile, Anna has become obsessively attracted to the strange, stormy Ferryman. Over the course of their trip the family find their lives intersecting with the island in ways that are both alluring yet deadly. In Bodeg they each find something they crave, not realising the island is wielding its own magnetic influence, steadily pulling them closer and closer and threatening to never let them go.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Literature and Creative Writing
Depositing User: Jackie Webb
Date Deposited: 01 Aug 2018 13:35
Last Modified: 01 Aug 2018 13:35
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/67912
DOI:

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