Academic journal article Journal of Organizational Culture, Communications and Conflict

The Binary Worldview in the Early Novels by A. Burgess (Inside Mr Enderby and Enderby Outside)

Academic journal article Journal of Organizational Culture, Communications and Conflict

The Binary Worldview in the Early Novels by A. Burgess (Inside Mr Enderby and Enderby Outside)

Article excerpt


The acknowledged professors who specialize in Anthony Burgess creative activity, S. Coale and A. De Vitis, mark the theme of the opposites' collision as one of the main in the works by Burgess (Coale, 1981; Anthony, 1972). In their monographs they point at the author's dual worldview which is expressed in the opposition of the eastern and western cultures (The Malayan Trilogy) or confrontation of the collective and individual interests (anti-utopian novels of the author). In Russian literary studies this theme is also considered in the context of inter-relations of the East and the West, the State and society; we can state an example of the articles by L. Khabibulina and O. Serdiukova (Habibullina, 2010; Serdiukova, 2016). At the same time, the binary theme which is characteristic of Burgess, has not been studied yet on the example of Enderby novels, thus the scientific novelty of this article is determined.

In order to develop this theme, we will focus our attention on the first cycle of the tetralogy about the poet Enderby that includes four novels written at different times: Inside Mr Enderby, (1964), Enderby Outside, (1968), The Clockwork Testament or: Enderby 's End, (1974), Enderby 's Dark Lady or: No End to Enderby, (1984) (Burgess, 2012; Burgess, 2012; Burgess, 2012; Burgess, 2012).



The analysis of the novel's artistic world is used in this work. The binarity of the author's picture of the world is considered at the levels of images and the plot level.


The majority of the experts on Burgess works point at the fact that the binary world picture in the writer's world was formed under the impact of the Manichean world view he shared.

In the monograph "Anthony Burgess", S. Coale considers the sources of the writer's dualistic world view in details, and, referring to Burgess sayings, calls the Manichean teaching one of the main sources, which, in turn, impacted the Catholicism, in line with which the writer was raised, and also the Hegelian dialectic and structuralism (Coale, 1981). Actually, the duality is one of the foundations of the western picture of the world, and numerous sayings of the writer on this theme, stated in the mentioned monograph, are only underlining the significance of binary oppositions for his world view and work.

One of the major contradictions in life of the main hero of Inside Mr Enderby is the controversy of his own nature. On the first pages of the novel the writer defines his protagonist as "a man who lived inside himself" and dedicates a half of the work to description of the hero's internal world, which completely accords with the title of the book itself (Burgess, 2012). Endery is a forty-five year old infantile poet, scared of the outer world and due to this fact he lives a private life. He spends the major part of his time in the lavatory, forced to use it by its direct intention due to constant diarrhea caused by fatty indigestible food. J. Stinson, a well-known researcher of Burgess' works, remarks that the name of Enderby sounds as "end" and "be" in English, and completely corresponds to major natural needs of a simple man, most often conducted in the lavatory room (for Enderby it's the act of defecation as a consequence of persistent dyspepsia, and the act of masturbation as the result of absence of full-fledged sexual life) (Hoffman and Hoffman, 1987). Besides, the lavatory is a habitual working place of Enderby as a poet; the place where the creative process is easily combined with the physiological one. Enderby appears in the novel as a disorderly man, neglecting personal hygiene: the poet keeps unfinished verses in a bathroom, mixed with finished ones. However, as the hero himself suggests, he keeps his home clean by leaving everything in its place: dirty dishes are in the sink or on the stove, remains of food are on the table. The paradoxial image of Enderby is a reflection of the author's conception of creative personality, opposed to the romantic conception of the poet's image. …

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