Narratology: An Introduction

By Susana Onega ; Jose Angel Garcia Landa | Go to book overview

recalling Goethe, named Zeiterlebnis, and that narratology, by decree and as a result of its strict methodology, sets out of bounds. The major difficulty is then to preserve the fictive quality of this Zeiterlebnis, while resisting its reduction to narrative technique alone. [ . . . ]


Notes
1.
Morphologische Poetik, ed. Elena Müller ( Tubingen: Niemeyer, 1968) is the title that was adopted by Gunther Müller for a collection of his essays dating from 1964-8.
2.
It is worth recalling that Propp was also inspired by Goethe.
3.
The term Aussparung emphasizes both what is omitted (life itself, as we shall see) and what is retained, chosen, or picked out. The French word épargne sometimes has these two meanings: what is spared is what is available to someone and it is also what is not touched, as when we say that a village was spared by (épargné par) the bombing. The word 'savings' (l'épargne), precisely, includes what is put aside for one to make use of and what is left aside and sheltered.
4.
Müller is somewhat ill at ease in speaking of this time of the narrative in itself, which is neither narrated nor read, a sort of disembodied time, measured by the number of pages, in order to distinguish it from the time of reading, to which each reader contributes his own Lesetempo (ibid., p. 275).
5.
For example, the study of Goethe Lehrejahre begins with a comparison between the 650 pages taken as 'the measure of the physical time required by the narrator to tell his story' (ibid., p. 270) and the eight years covered by the narrated events. It is, however, the incessant variations in relative lengths that create the work's tempo.
6.
GÉRARD GENETTE, "'Frontiers of Narrative,'" in Figures of Literary Discourse, trans. Alan Sheridan ( New York: Columbia University Press, 1982), pp. 127-44; Narrative Discourse: An Essay in Method, trans. Jane E. Lewin ( Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1980); Nouveau Discours du ricit ( Paris: Seuil, 1983).
7.
Narrative theory has never, in fact, stopped oscillating between bipartition and tripartition. The Russian formalists recognize the distinction between sjužet and fabula, the subject and the tale. For Schklovsky, the tale designates the material used in forming the subject; the subject of Eugene Onegin, for example, is the elaboration of the tale, and hence a construction. Cf. Théorie de la littérature. Textes des journalistes russes, collected, presented, and translated by Tzvetan Todorov, Preface by Roman Jakobson ( Paris: Seuil, 1965), pp. 54-5. Tomashevski adds that the development of the tale may be characterized as 'the passage from one situation to another' (ibid., p. 273). The subject is what the reader perceives as resulting from the techniques of composition (ibid., p. 208). In a similar sense, Todorov himself makes a distinction between discourse and story ( 'Les catégories du récit littérairé). Bremond uses the terms 'narrating narrative' and 'narrated narrative' ( Logique de récit, p. 321, no. 1). Cesare Segre, however, proposes the triad: discourse (signifier), plot (the signified in the order of literary composition), and fabula (the signified in the logical and chronological order of events) ( Structures and Time: Narration, Poetry, Models, trans. John Meddemmen ( Chicago: University of Chicago Press,

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