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標題: Melancholy and Female Genealogy in Michael Cunningham''s The Hours
作者: 陳友莉
Chen, Yu Li
關鍵字: melancholy;憂鬱;Michael Cunningham;The Hours;female genealogy;wonder;generosity;麥可康寧漢;時時刻刻;女性系譜;驚奇;寬容
出版社: 外國語文學系
本論文用克麗斯蒂娃 (Julia Kristeva) 的憂鬱和依瑞格萊 (Luce Irigaray) 的女性系譜觀點來閱讀麥可康寧漢 (Michael Cunningham) 的《時時刻刻》 (The Hours)。克麗斯蒂娃所提出的憂鬱是一種自戀的憂傷 (narcissistic depression),即憂鬱患者承受著一種無以名狀的悲傷,然而他們並不是完全脫離語言符號,而是在自己的悲傷中尋求意義。因此,克麗斯蒂娃認為憂鬱患者必須認同想像的父親以便和外界妥協。
另外,依瑞格萊也指出女性因缺乏女性系譜,才處於被遺棄的狀態。首先,依瑞格萊用觸碰的觀點,一方面來對抗男性的凝視,另一方面展現女性的多樣性。依瑞格萊接著建議女性不但要愛母親更要愛彼此,這並不意味著依瑞格萊想建立另一種同一 (sameness),她反而用迪卡兒 (Descartes) 的驚奇觀點來闡釋性別差異的倫理,這種觀點再加上寬容的話更能提供互信的基礎,也能補足驚奇的限制,女人據此不再爭取平等,而是要和男人處於對等的地位。
依據上述理論基礎來詮釋麥可康寧漢的《時時刻刻》,我們可以獲得以下二點結論。首先,康寧漢描述的女性角色承受著無名的憂傷,他用作者、讀者及角色的三角關係,說明書中每位主角所承受的憂鬱,並用書中作者之死來啟發讀者參與文本的重要性,所以不僅將憂鬱提昇至體驗文學的地位,也能給憂傷帶來意義。再者,麥可康寧漢用理察 (Richard Brown) 之死來營造蘿拉 (Laura Brown) 和克萊莎 (Clarissa Vaughan) 面對面的機會,因此克萊莎能體會蘿拉的憂鬱,也能體會自己的存在價值,才能寬容的面對蘿拉並用驚奇的態度來面對未來挑戰。

This thesis aims to interpret Michael Cunningham's The Hours from the viewpoints of Julia Kristeva's melancholia and Luce Irigaray's female genealogy. Kristeva's melancholia is a kind of narcissistic depression, which the melancholic suffers from the most archaic expression of unnameable sadness, the Thing. However, the melancholic are not totally severed from the use of signs, but search for meanings in their own despairs. Kristeva suggests that the melancholic have to identify with the father of individual prehistory in order to reconcile with the external world.
On the other hand, Luce Irigaray indicates that woman is in a state of dereliction due to want of female genealogy. Firstly, Irigaray purports touch in opposition to man's gaze to demonstrate the multiplicity of female sexuality. Secondly, Irigaray suggests that an ethics of female genealogy can be achieved by women loving each other not only as mothers, but also as women. Irigaray, however, does not intend to construct another sameness; instead she turns to Descartes' wonder to create an ethics of sexual difference. The notion of wonder can be further implemented by the incorporation of generosity in order to provide the basis for respect and the kind of limit wonder needs. Accordingly, woman is not equal to man, but is his other.
We could, thereby, summarize the following main points if interpreting Cunningham's The Hours in terms of Julia Kristeva's melancholia and Luce Irigaray's female genealogy. Firstly, three female characters in Cunningham's The Hours, in terms of Kristevan melancholia, suffer from unnameable sadness. Cunningham devices a triangular relationship﹘a writer, reader, and a character﹘to demonstrate the depression of each character. Cunningham devices the death of the author to illuminate the importance of reader's involvement in the reading experience. Therefore, Cunningham sublimates the depressive mood to literary experience, which is able to give meaning to depressive mood. Secondly, incorporating Irigarayan theory with Cunningham's The Hours, I found Cunningham intricately devices the death of Richard Brown to bring out the final encounter between Laura Brown and Clarissa Vaughan. Without the mediation of Richard's narrative, Clarissa can finally understand Laura's sorrow and realize the value of her own life. Accordingly, she is able to face Laura with generosity and to meet the challenge of life with wonder.
Michael Cunningham breaks through time and space barrier and unravels depressions of his three female characters in The Hours. The novel does not end in a depressive mood but in affirmation. The thesis intends to read Cunningham's The Hours from feminist perspectives hoping to contribute different insights such as melancholia and female genealogy to this novel.
Appears in Collections:外國語文學系所

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