Displaced identities in the short stories of George Egerton

Standlee, Whitney orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-3823-6652 (2006) Displaced identities in the short stories of George Egerton. Masters thesis, University of Central Lancashire.

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This thesis provides an analysis of a selection of short stories written by George Egerton (Mary Chavelita Dunne) in her first three published volumes: Keynotes (1893), Discords (1894) and Symphonies (1897). The study examines Egerton's problematic position as an Irish writer, with a specific critical focus on evaluating the relationship between Egerton's texts and her status as both a woman of Irish origins and a migrant.
The relevance of Irish cultural and historical contexts to Egerton's texts is assessed, and amongst those evaluated in relationship to her work are the Great Famine, the Irish Diaspora, British imperialist ideologies, Catholicism, growing religious sectarianism throughout the nineteenth century, the Home Rule movement and the fall of Charles Stewart Pamell. Also under consideration in this work is the suggestion that Egerton repeatedly portrays the effects of inhabiting a space 'inbetween'
nations, religions and genders in her fiction, and that these portrayals are informed and instigated by her position as a migrant female of Irish origins with ambivalent cultural and religious affinities.
Critical focus is placed on the relationship between Egerton's displaced subjects and twentieth and twenty-first century theories concerned with dwelling in displacement, including those of Edward Said, Avtar Brah, Julia Kristeva, Homi Bhabha and Aijaz Ahmad. Through the examination of a representative selection of Egerton's stories, the contexts within which they were written, and theories concerned with diaspora and migration, this thesis contemplates the means by which the multiple
types of displacement portrayed in Egerton's texts confront the procedures and values of her era at the same time that they are complexly and ambiguously informed by, and complicit in, the discourses of her time.

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