Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A myth of her own: A study of Anaïs Nin's self-life writing
by Oropeza, Clara, Ph.D., Pacifica Graduate Institute, 2015, 207; 10009503
Abstract (Summary)

Both her feminine subjectivity and extensive time frame (ranging from 1914-1974), make the works of Anaïs Nin an important example of the depth and range of self-exploration, perhaps more so than in previous writers. Nin was committed to a creative process inclusive of psyche, the body and aesthetics derived from her own life experiences. This analysis of the mythic tropes that permeate Nin’s literary diaries and fiction demonstrates the ways in which Nin created a mythic style of her own, which contrasts with the aesthetics of T.S. Eliot’s mythic method. In fact, as a late Modernist, Nin particularly emphasized what this dissertation will call earth mother consciousness as a response to the wasteland of her time, and as a way to create a connection between literature and life. Thus, a better understanding of Nin’s literary achievements emerges through a study of a mythic perspective, which helps to secure Nin’s belonging in the literary canon.

This archetypal analysis shows myth playing a fluid role that reveals psyche in the process of writing a continuously changing sense of self into a personal myth of her own, revealing the extensive possibilities of an opulent feminine psyche. The literary diary, for Nin, is a genre that with its traces of the trickstar/trickster archetype, among others, reveals a mercurial, yet particular understanding of an internalized and embodied experience as a writer. Keywords: Anaïs Nin, modernism, mythology, literary diaries, women’s studies, feminism, personal myth, archetypes, trickstar, trickster, Jung, self-life writing.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Rowland, Susan
Commitee: Mozol, Ana, Nalbantian, Suzanne
School: Pacifica Graduate Institute
Department: Mythological Studies
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 77/07(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Folklore, Womens studies, Psychology
Keywords: Feminism, Literary diaries, Modernism, Nin, anais
Publication Number: 10009503
ISBN: 978-1-339-46130-4
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