Space, place, and literary representations of the landscapes of California, 1880-1917

Sikand-Youngs, Nathaniel Rajinder (2020) Space, place, and literary representations of the landscapes of California, 1880-1917. MRes thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Space and place are foundational concepts in geography and the humanities more broadly, but usable, concrete definitions for them have yet to be pinned down. This dissertation begins by offering one such approach, where a place is the material result of the convergence of myriad spatial factors upon a particular geographical and temporal location, and space is the immaterial effect that a place becomes when it exceeds its locationality to affect another remote location and in so doing ceases to be a place. I then put these ideas to work by analysing the landscapes of three Californian novels: Jack London’s The Valley of the Moon (1913), Frank Norris’s The Octopus (1901, set in the early 1880s), and Mary Hunter Austin’s The Ford (1917). My dissertation argues that each novel adopts a distinct method of constructing geography, which enables them to articulate their respective politics – individualist white supremacy, naturalistic anti-corporatism, pro-industrial environmentalism – and to express their conceptions of the different Californian landscapes in which they are set.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (MRes)
Supervisors: Thompson, Graham
Pethers, Matthew
Keywords: California, Landscape, Space and place, Jack London, Mary Hunter Austin
Subjects: P Language and literature > PS American literature
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of American and Canadian Studies
Item ID: 61068
Depositing User: Sikand-Youngs, Nathaniel
Date Deposited: 27 Nov 2020 09:41
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2020 09:45

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