Incredulity towards Emancipatory Metanarrative: A Postmodern critique of Barth’s Autobiography: A Self-Recorded Fiction and Calvino’s Good for Nothing

Authors

  • Sundus Javaid
  • Saima Umer
  • Aimen Batoo

Keywords:

Metanarrative, Postmodernism, Gaze, Angst, Hyperreality, metafiction, intertextuality, blank, parody, Self-conscious reflexivity

Abstract

Metanarratives or grand narratives pertain to ideological constructs, having a tendency to universalize human experience in terms of both oppression and freedom. Postmodernism, in this regard, takes a skeptic stance towards such ideological foundations as human constructs and hence, fictive devices which intend to divide reality in terms of binaries as true/false, real/unreal and etc. It tends to dismantle the ideological foundation of reason and human emancipation not only in terms of complete freedom and salvation for humanity but also through a sense of surveillance of oppressive and hegemonic gaze which individuals experience in a Postmodern world. Postmodernism also unsettles the manipulative designs of narratives and voices multiplicity and heterogeneity in the form of diverse ways to approach knowledge in order to subvert the practice of exclusion within the dominant narrative of reason and enlightenment. This epistemological multiplicity and heterogeneity in turn, ultimately leads towards a sense of meaninglessness and chaos in human existence i.e. Angst. The skepticism towards the ideology of absolutistic freedom is achieved through Postmodernist notion of Simulated reality that is, hyperreality. Hyperreality in Postmodern literature tends to voice the real presence of absolute unreality in the form of ambivalence between the fixed notions of real versus unreal. Moreover, Postmodernism perturbs the safe haven of absolute real through various narrative techniques like metafiction, intertextuality, historiographic metafiction and blank parody. The present study deals with the Postmodernist analysis of Barth’s Autobiography: A Self-Recorded Fiction and Calvino’s Good for Nothing particularly through Postmodernist narrative techniques. The study mainly deals with Barth and Calvino’s engagement with Postmodernist skepticism towards the metanarrative of emancipation as an illusory construct for human liberation. The study also intends to reveal that how the short stories of Barth and Calvino signify the lack and absence of unified reality and absolute freedom through narrative uncertainty and unreliability through self-conscious reflexivity.

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Published

2024-04-02

How to Cite

Sundus Javaid, Saima Umer, & Aimen Batoo. (2024). Incredulity towards Emancipatory Metanarrative: A Postmodern critique of Barth’s Autobiography: A Self-Recorded Fiction and Calvino’s Good for Nothing. Panacea Journal of Linguistics & Literature, 3(1), 44–52. Retrieved from https://journals.airsd.org/index.php/pjll/article/view/378

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Section

Articles