Sylvie Mikowski

Université d’Orléans
Maître de conférences à l’université d'Orléans, Sylvie Mikowski a soutenu une thèse intitulée Mémoire et imagination dans les romans de John McGahern. Elle a effectué plusieurs publications sur McGahern, Eugene McCabe, William Trevor, Patrick McCabe, Briege Duffaud, et elle prépare actuellement un ouvrage sur le roman irlandais à partir des années soixante.

Articles de l'auteur

Cycnos | Volume 15 n°2

Exil impossible et éternel retour dans les romans de John McGahern

This paper examines how, in all the five novels written so far by McGahern, the necessity to leave their homes is experienced by the characters as an ordeal which they do not manage to overcome, especially as it often corresponds to the death of their mother ; hence their enduring nostalgia and their compulsion to find the way back to their original point of departure. Likewise, the structure of most of McGahern’s narratives is characterized by a pattern of circularity, in which the endings are made to echo the beginnings. This is true of The Barracks, in which the last page is the almost exact replica of the first ; this is true of The Leavetaking, which ends with a quotation from Matthew Arnold’s verses : “Begin and cease, and then begin again”. The incapacity to break away from their origins might thus seem for the characters a weakness, but as far as the writing is concerned, the endless return to the same sources is what gives it its quality of incantation and evocation.

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