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"Erasing Angel": The Lucifer-Trickster Figure in Flannery O'Connor's Short Fiction

"Erasing Angel": The Lucifer-Trickster Figure in Flannery O'Connor's Short Fiction Erasing Angel : The LuciferTrickster Figure in Flannery O Connor s Short Fiction by Melita Schaum "A dimension taken away is one thing; a dimension added is another." --Flannery O'Connor, "The Fiction Writer and His Country" "The origins, liveliness, and durability of cultures," writes cultural historian Lewis Hyde, "require that there be space for figures whose function is to uncover and disrupt the very things that culture is based on" (9). In his excellent study Trickster Makes This World (1998), Hyde joins a long and distinguished line of critics examining the archetypal tricksterfigure in world mythologies: a figure of mischievous disruption characterized by rule-breaking, lies, theft, shape-shifting, and wordplay; a citizen of contingencies and thresholds who, while subverting and denigrating existing orders, paradoxically thereby allows for a creative reanimation and restoration of social and metaphysical order. The fraternity of tricksterfigures is a familiar one in folklore and myth: Hermes in Greek antiquity, the Chinese Monkey King, the Norse prankster Loki and East Africa's spider-god Anansi (transformed in American Gulla dialect to the folkloric "Aunt Nancy"), the Native American figures of Coyote and Raven, the Yoruba Eshu and the Maori trickster Maui, to mention just a few. From Puck http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png The Southern Literary Journal University of North Carolina Press

"Erasing Angel": The Lucifer-Trickster Figure in Flannery O'Connor's Short Fiction

The Southern Literary Journal , Volume 33 (1) – Dec 1, 2000

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Publisher
University of North Carolina Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 Department of English of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
ISSN
1534-1461
Publisher site
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Abstract

Erasing Angel : The LuciferTrickster Figure in Flannery O Connor s Short Fiction by Melita Schaum "A dimension taken away is one thing; a dimension added is another." --Flannery O'Connor, "The Fiction Writer and His Country" "The origins, liveliness, and durability of cultures," writes cultural historian Lewis Hyde, "require that there be space for figures whose function is to uncover and disrupt the very things that culture is based on" (9). In his excellent study Trickster Makes This World (1998), Hyde joins a long and distinguished line of critics examining the archetypal tricksterfigure in world mythologies: a figure of mischievous disruption characterized by rule-breaking, lies, theft, shape-shifting, and wordplay; a citizen of contingencies and thresholds who, while subverting and denigrating existing orders, paradoxically thereby allows for a creative reanimation and restoration of social and metaphysical order. The fraternity of tricksterfigures is a familiar one in folklore and myth: Hermes in Greek antiquity, the Chinese Monkey King, the Norse prankster Loki and East Africa's spider-god Anansi (transformed in American Gulla dialect to the folkloric "Aunt Nancy"), the Native American figures of Coyote and Raven, the Yoruba Eshu and the Maori trickster Maui, to mention just a few. From Puck

Journal

The Southern Literary JournalUniversity of North Carolina Press

Published: Dec 1, 2000

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