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Les représentations de Naples dans l'écriture de Tahar Ben Jelloun (1992-1999)

Author(s): Magdalena Zdrada-Cok

Journal: Intercâmbio
ISSN 0873-366X

Volume: 1;
Start page: 91;
Date: 2008;
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Keywords: Naples | margin | labyrinth | self-reference | literature.

The article is about various representations of Naples in « The poor tavern » and « The maze of feelings » T.Ben Jelloun. Naples,through its nature full of contradictions, being both spiritual and satanic, becomes the reflection of writer’s inspirations and thoughts, that are in contrast. Ben Jelloun, just to create the Naples sphere, that is somewhere between violence and spirit, refers to artistic works of Ernest Pignon-Ernest. He goes further and uses the symbolic meaning of the maze, being inspired by representations of Jorge Louis Borges and James Joyce. In the diptych (1999) the maze symbolizes cruel underground desires of the town where its Minotaur is hidden. On the other hand, according to the antithesis logic, the same maze becomes a place of the characters’ spiritual pilgrimage searching the Ideal. Finally, creating the idea of Naples maze, Ben Jelloun realizes the theme of writing : the forks of the dark tunnel not only make real the author’s dilemmas but also contrast them with his own ideas and characters. However, they strongly emphasize the struggle between striving to perfection and the necessity to follow the reality (with all its dark sides).
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