National Repository of Grey Literature 52 records found  1 - 10nextend  jump to record: Search took 0.00 seconds. 
Pragmatic Method, Transformation, Perspectivism, and Individualism: The Cornerstone of Pragmatism Laid by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ľuba, Peter ; Robbins, David Lee (advisor) ; Roraback, Erik Sherman (referee)
This BA thesis aims to investigate the sources and correspondences between the philosophical work of Ralph Waldo Emerson and philosophy of pragmatism. Emerson, as one of the chief figures of American philosophy, laid the cornerstone of pragmatic method of thinking which later became further developed by philosophers such as Richard Bernstein, John Dewey, Sidney Hook, Richard Poirier, Richard Rorty, and William James, among others. The main aim of this thesis is to compare the thoughts of these thinkers to those of Ralph Waldo Emerson, who either directly or indirectly precedes them; and additionally to determine whether these reflections are only correspondences, or whether Emerson was a direct source. This thesis examines four main signs of pragmatic method of thinking, and each of these signs has its own chapter. Chapter 2 explores the Pragmatic method, which focuses on practical differences and conclusions, and compares Emerson mainly to William James and Sidney Hook. Chapter 3 is divided into two subsections: Emerson's Orientation Towards the Future and his sense of Fugacity, or fleetingness. Among others, prophetic pragmatism of Cornel West and Richard Rorty's views on fleetingness of signs are compared to Emerson's works. Chapter 4 examines Emerson's Perspectivism, Creative Metaphors, and...
Feminist Science Fiction: Cherie Priest's The Clockwork Century
Nováková, Petra ; Veselá, Pavla (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee)
Feminist Science Fiction: Cherie Priest's The Clockwork Century Diploma Thesis Petra Nováková Abstract Marleen S. Barr, one of the pioneers of feminist science fiction criticism, is an outspoken commentator on gender inequality in this genre. In Feminist Fabulation: Space/Postmodern Fiction and Future Females: A Critical Anthology, Barr defines feminist science fiction as metafiction about patriarchal fiction. She speaks out against both authors and critics who recycle narratives restricted by a patriarchal view of the world in which women are silenced and/or relegated to the position of an accessory of the male hero, made to behave in a stereotypically feminine manner. While Barr does not include steampunk fiction but focuses on science fiction oriented towards the future and space exploration, her analysis of the female character's plight is nonetheless applicable to the steampunk genre. In this respect, feminist steampunk fiction can be read as a meditation on established gender norms. Cherie Priest's work is a prime example of such an innovative re-examination of gender stereotypes that Barr calls for in her critical work. As both a woman and a writer of science fiction, the author has adopted a feminist approach in her steampunk series The Clockwork Century. Among other things, Priest examines the role...
The Concept of Property in the Context of Early American Political Writing
Čabartová, Kristýna ; Robbins, David Lee (advisor) ; Veselá, Pavla (referee)
When observing the values which repeatedly appear in early American literature, we encounter ideas such as liberty, freedom, or the importance of the individual, but while property and ownership are often also core ideas and motivations for many Americans, their appearance is much more limited and excluded from certain contexts. However, property was always a key issue and economic profitability was always considered as foremost both on political and individual level. This can be seen all throughout American history since its beginning until the present, yet there is the curious trend of downplaying the importance of property in politically oriented text. While no one questioned its value in the past, Americans outwardly replaced property with liberty. Nevertheless, its importance cannot be hidden so easily and through careful examination it is shown as being understood as a pre-requisite of freedom and security, even as it is never the central focus of any major early American political text. This thesis explores the concept of property in the context of early American political writing in the area between eighteenth and nineteenth century; drawing from texts such as the Declaration of Independence, The Federalist, The Anti-Federalist Papers, Common Sense and other contemporary political pamphlets...
Changing Tendencies in Self-Conscious Narratives: A Contrastive Interpretation
Sedláček, Martin ; Procházka, Martin (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee)
Thesis Abstract The present thesis investigates correlations between a selection of metafictional texts and narrative theory. The selection consists in two sets of self-reflexive texts. The first one explores metafictional tendencies in the 17th and 18th century novels. To achieve this, the selection largely ignores their provenience. In addition to Henry Fielding's Tom Jones and Laurence Sterne's Tristram Shandy, it also examines Cervantes's Don Quixote. The latter set of texts focuses on post-War American metafictions (John Barth's Lost in the Funhouse, Donald Barthelme's Snow White, Kurt Vonnegut's Slaughterhouse-Five). These represent a coherent body of works from a particular period. Metafiction is generally understood as fiction about fiction. The present thesis challenges those assumptions and suggests interpreting metafiction within the framework of Michel Foucault's epistemes. Metafiction is not conceived of as a separate genre of literature but in the context of broader cultural tendencies in the understanding of representation. Representation is a key concept in metafiction and the increasing degree of narrative self-awareness is viewed in this light. The thesis emphasizes this contrastive and interdisciplinary approach. The text is divided into five chapters. Chapter one is a theoretical...
Emersonianism, American Nationalism, and Nature in the Poetry of Robert Frost
Schröderová, Simona ; Quinn, Justin (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee)
The aim of this thesis is to analyse three major aspects of Robert Frost's poetry: first his relationship with Emersonianism, second with American nationalism, and third with the natural world. Besides the use of form and the focus on rhythm and meter, these three aspects are to a great extent characteristic of Frost's poetry, recurring in many of his poems. Analysing them provides a comprehensive view of the poet's work and illuminates his unique style distinguishable by its play of imagination, the often unnoticed ambiguity and even obscurity. The analysis will be based on close readings of Frost's poems, available critical material, and comparisons with other authors who deal with the same aspects and have influenced Frost's work. With Emersonianism this will include, besides Emerson's essays, the works of Thoreau and Whitman. The three authors had indubitably a great influence on Frost. Particularly their concepts of individualism, self-reliance and life in society can be traced in some of Frost's best known poems such as 'The Road Not Taken' or the 'Mending Wall'. Frost's take on them however, is much more complex than is generally believed. His development of these themes brings mainly indefinite results. Given that in the U.S. nationalism is a concept that often overlaps with individualism,...
"Písař Bartleby" v současné kultuře
Stejskalová, Tereza ; Roraback, Erik Sherman (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee) ; Arbeit, Marcel (referee)
This dissertation is based on the observation that Herman Melville's "Bartleby, the Scrivener" has become a popular reference in contemporary culture. Not only in the field of literary scholarship but also in the realm of art, political theory and philosophy, it is employed as an example of authentic resistance to power, a counter-intuitive politics that finds its strength in withdrawal, inaction, and inscrutability. The thesis examines the reasons and motives that drive literary scholars, artists and philosophers to read, interpret and use the story in such a way. It does so by analyzing the nature of and reoccurring patterns in Bartleby Industry, the enormous bulk of academic scholarship devoted to the story. It observes how the story is made use of outside of literary scholarship by disciplines, such as art and philosophy, that are not primarily concerned with the literary complexity of the story but use it to work on their own problems of politics and ethics. It pays special attention to its popularity among influential Postmarxist philosophers, namely Slavoj Žižek, Giorgio Agamben and Gilles Deleuze. As the presence of "Bartleby" in the realm of philosophy has to do with a particular function literature performs in that field, in these chapters "Bartleby" becomes more of a guiding thread in order to...
Hidden Treason: Aspects of the Protagonist's Action in Ralph Ellison's Invisible Man
Redchitc, Daria ; Robbins, David Lee (advisor) ; Veselá, Pavla (referee)
BA Thesis Abstract From the very moment of its publication in 1952 Invisible Man by Ralph Waldo Ellison has been widely discussed by critics but, in my view, the Prologue did not receive due attention. In my thesis I am going to argue that it is exactly in the Prologue where the readers can see Invisible Man in full action, although he himself seems to overlook it even in the Epilogue, in which the protagonist is still uncertain about his future action. That is possible, for the tone of the whole novel suggests that the protagonist is not as insightful as he may think. Otherwise, if the Prologue is not there to show the readers that the protagonist is actually in full action, the purpose of the Prologue as a mere introductory piece seems to be redundant if one is to bear in mind that in the first paragraph of the first chapter the protagonist repeats the essential information of the Prologue, that is that he is invisible. In my thesis I am going to discuss the protagonist's action in the Prologue and how it serves the purpose of the entire novel, the key activity being the "fight against Monopolated Light & Power" which could be read on two levels: as straightforward civil disobedience and as symbolic artistic manifesto. The former concept is significant in the range of the whole novel and American...
The African-American Slave Narrative in Context: Frederick Douglass and Harriet Ann Jacobs
Chýlková, Jana ; Veselá, Pavla (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee)
in English The aim of this MA thesis is to bring new perspectives on the genre of the African-American slave narrative. Therefore, its wider historical, socio-political and gender contexts are considered and the circumstances surrounding its development and current criticism are briefly outlined. The point of departure is a discussion of definitions that vary among the scholars who select different criteria for the subject of definition. The existing diversity of the texts and voices is discussed in connection to Moses Grandy's Narrative of the Life of Moses Grandy, Late a Slave in the United States of America. Grandy's narrative, an account of the maritime slave life, is analyzed. Its traditional, uniform narrative structures are juxtaposed with passages where some aspects of his masculine identity, problematized by the institution of slavery, can be traced. Ultimately, the thesis attempts to show that while the conventionalized framework pre-defining the narrative outline and themes is delineated by James Olney, any generally recognized definition of the genre does not exist. As a result of that conclusion, the genre is defined in the scope of this thesis. After the major characteristics of the genre are discussed and the definition of the African- American slave narrative is put forward, more...
The Comic in Henry James' Fiction
Kudrna, David ; Roraback, Erik Sherman (advisor) ; Robbins, David Lee (referee)
The subject of this thesis is the study and interpretation of the interlacement of the world of comedy in several works of Henry James and the reflection in these fictions of certain specified problems and challenges of modern society which assist to bring forth the social ambience therein. In the author's opinion, the comedy in the said works of James, on the fundamental level, criticises and pokes fun at the evils of modern society and the characters who pay homage to them. The thesis argues that the comedy in the analysed works of Henry James satirizes several challenging, problematic socio-cultural and economic developments of contemporary modern times through the ridicule and stigmatization of the mostly despicable characters who, under the sway of these developments, perpetrate their negative influence on the lives of other characters in the selected works. To substantiate this argument the thesis looks at the following works of James: The Wings of the Dove, The Golden Bowl, The Portrait of a Lady, The Ambassadors, "The Turn of the Screw" and "The Beast in the Jungle." At the outset, the thesis outlines briefly several critical approaches to the comedy in James's works, comments on their validity, reveals the author's views, and points in the direction of the critical opinions and approaches...

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