Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The near and far: Hermeneutics of the cannibal in Jean de Léry
by Baselis-Bitoun, Lison, Ph.D., Harvard University, 2007, 261; 3267065
Abstract (Summary)

Jean de Léry belongs to the literary canon of the sixteenth century essentially for his, Histoire d'un voyage faict en la terre du Brésil. The objective of this study is to mark a distinct trajectory, aiming to bring out into the light Léry's other text, the Histoire memorable de la ville de Sancerre, published in 1574. I argue that the latter text engages and makes possible the writing of the Histoire d'un voyage sheds light on it.

At the origin of this study, there is an enigma: Why did Léry wait twenty years to write his Histoire d'un voyage? What's more, why is this text so often reworked and revised? The world is changing, so too does the text, this text of Léry will remain open, it will be constantly revised during the life of the author and there will be no less than five distinct editions before Léry's death, in 1613. The reading of the Histoire memorable brings forth the essential question and the basis of this study: the question of the near and the far, the question of difference and alterity. There lies the cornerstone of the leryan architecture.

Léry affirms in his preface that it is the Cosmographie of Thevet which engages and makes possible the writing of his Histoire d'un voyage. However, what he demonstrates and proves without any ambiguity in all editions of the Histoire d'un voyage , is the link between the two "Histoires" the "memorable" one of the city of Sancerre and the one of the "voyage" in the land of Brazil, in which the cannibal act is the thread that binds them, red thread from the blood of the sacrificed, red thread from the ink of Brazil.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Conley, Tom
School: Harvard University
School Location: United States -- Massachusetts
Source: DAI-A 68/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Romance literature
Keywords: Cannibal, France, Hermeneutics, Lery, Jean de
Publication Number: 3267065
ISBN: 978-0-549-04487-1
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