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Representations of Cornishness in the novels of Daphne du Maurier

Woodcock, Pete (2015) Representations of Cornishness in the novels of Daphne du Maurier. Cornish Studies. ISSN 1352-271X (In Press)

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Abstract

This paper is an attempt to add to the literature on the cultural construction of Cornwall and Cornishness, taking as its basis that there is no ‘real’ notion of Cornishness, and ‘casting place as a social and cultural process rather than an achieved state or pre-social residue and refuge.’ It will examine the depiction of Cornwall given to us in the novels of Daphne du Maurier, and will suggest that the view of Cornishness she presents is one of escape and excitement, a view no doubt formed by her personal relationship with the area, rather than one of fixed historical, cultural and ethnic identities which is often the stuff of nationalist movements. It will also suggest that as a result of this depiction the notion of the Tourist Gaze helps us to understand du Maurier’s depiction of Cornishness. As such this paper broadly accepts Payton’s assertion that du Maurier’s fiction was ‘entirely devoid of nationalist constructions of Cornwall, political or cultural.’ Although, we shall see that from time to time du Maurier does flirt with traditionally nationalist concepts, she seldom uses these in a traditionally nationalist manner. What she does do, however, is portray Cornwall in a particular manner, a manner which has become resonant to readers of her novels

Item Type: Article
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
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Depositing User: Sara Taylor
Date Deposited: 16 Jul 2015 11:11
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2016 04:21
URI: http://eprints.hud.ac.uk/id/eprint/25181

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