Sartre's Nausea: Text, Context, Intertext

Sartre's Nausea: Text, Context, Intertext

Sartre's Nausea: Text, Context, Intertext

Sartre's Nausea: Text, Context, Intertext


Twenty-five years after his death, critics and academics, film-makers and journalists continue to argue over Sartre's legacy. But certain interpretations have congealed around his iconic text Nausea, tending to confine it within the framework provided by the later philosophical work, Being and Nothingness. This volume opens up the text to a range of new approaches within the fields of English and Comparative Literature, as well as Philosophy and French Studies, under the headings: Text', Context', and Intertext': the textual strategies at work within the novel; the literary, cultural and philosophical context of its production; and the intertextual web within which it is situated. This volume will interest a wide public of teachers, students and all those who want to reconsider Sartre's legacy in the twenty-first century.


The chapters in this volume have been developed from papers presented at 'Nausea 2004: Why Study Jean-Paul Sartre's Nausea Today', a conference held at the University of Newcastle, New South Wales, in July 2004 at the initiative of Dr Alistair Rolls, whose experience of teaching Nausea both in French (to students in French Studies programmes) and in translation (to students of English literature) convinced him of the necessity to consider the novel afresh, freed from the baggage of traditional interpretations and the perspectives of hindsight. Students from different disciplines have correspondingly different expectations of the text, and its teachers, too, develop an understanding of it that is drawn from their own pedagogical as well as research-focussed commitments. We felt that certain aspects of the text – notably its value as a piece of creative writing and the artistic and literary context out of which it evolved – have been eclipsed by its iconic status as an Urtext of French Existentialism. It was our particular design, therefore, to recognise Nausea's status as a trans-disciplinary chameleon and to reveal the dynamic role that it can continue to play in dialogue with a wide range of texts, when placed in new literary and disciplinary contexts. The chapters in this volume, contributed by writers from a range of academic and literary areas, seek to offer fresh perspectives on the text and to show how much it has still to offer.

Because our authors are generally working with the Englishlanguage version of the text, references will be made throughout to the translation by Robert Baldick (Penguin 2000) and will be given by using a page number in brackets after each quotation.

The Editors would like to thank the School of Language and Media at the University of Newcastle, and particularly Professor Hugh Craig and Karyn Asher, for their support, and the University of Sydney for financial assistance. We also express our appreciation to Melanie Safon for her careful editing of the text.

E.R. A.R.

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