||Self-Transformation in Paul Auster’s The New York Trilogy
||Department of English
the mirror stage
the self and the other(intersubjectivity)
||本文嘗試透過拉岡的「鏡像階段」理論來詮釋保羅‧奧斯特《紐約三部曲》中自我與他者(the other)以及主體性形塑的議題。文本中三位主角之匱乏、欲望、與他者間相互依賴的關係均為本文焦點。以下各章分別論述三位主角不同的自我轉變，藉以突顯《紐約三部曲》中主體性形塑的潛在發展。第一章藉由拉岡的「鏡像階段」來探討《玻璃城市》中昆恩的自我轉變。昆恩試著經由認同他者來定義自我，但他的一切努力終究白費。第二章利用拉岡的「鏡像階段」與佛洛伊德理論中鬼魅性的「詭異」(the uncanny)概念，對《鬼靈》中藍與黑相互依存的分身關係加以分析。正因為藍與黑的關係密不可分，當藍殺死黑時，他也招致自我毀滅。第三章討論《禁鎖的房間》中敘事者與童年好友范修間糾葛的認同關係。不同於文本中前兩位主角，《禁鎖的房間》之敘事者不但存活下來，並且在追尋范修下落的過程中重新認識自我，進而化解雙方衝突。同時，令敘事者苦惱許久的問題─與范修間糾纏不清的關係─也在范修自殺後消弭於無形。對於《紐約三部曲》三位主角而言，他者的存在扮演極重要的角色。儘管主角們都因他者無預警的介入而更認識自我，但也同時對他者產生又愛又恨的矛盾情懷；於是，《紐約三部曲》中主體與他者間合諧共處、相互依存的關係漸生變化，以致於出現彼此懷有敵意、互相競爭的行為。然而，所有內心的衝突與掙扎都在《禁鎖的房間》一一劃下句點。若將《紐約三部曲》視為奧斯特角色之發展進程，可知主體性形塑和自我質疑雖始於一連串挫敗，卻終於自我認知的重新建構。《禁鎖的房間》之結局，似乎對奧斯特關注的身分認同與認識自我問題，透露出一絲曙光，也賦予《紐約三部曲》主體性形塑的可能性。
||This thesis attempts to explore issues of the self and the other and subjectivity in Paul Auster’s The New York Trilogy in light of Lacan’s notion of the mirror stage. The three protagonists’ lack, desire and their dependent relation with their counterparts are my main focuses. The following chapters examine three distinct developments of Auster’s protagonists’ self-transformation in The New York Trilogy. The first chapter discusses Daniel Quinn’s self-transformation in City of Glass with Lacan’s theory of the mirror stage. His endeavors to identify with the other and quest for his subjectivity fail in the end. In Chapter Two, I focus on the doubling relationship between Blue and Black in Ghosts by virtue of Lacan’s notion of the mirror stage and Freud’s idea of the uncanny. In fact, Blue can’t know himself and exist without Black. When Blue annihilates Black, he also brings about his self-destruction. In Chapter Three, the entangled relation between the narrator and his childhood friend, Fanshawe, in The Locked Room is the central concern. Different from the other protagonists, the narrator not only possesses self-understanding but also reconciles his conflicts with Fanshawe and breaks off their doubling relationship which always haunts the narrator. In The New York Trilogy, the other plays an important role for the three protagonists to get closer to their inner psyche and to know themselves. So to speak, the intrusion of the other leads protagonists to discover who they are and who they aren’t and at the same time three protagonists tend to develop ambivalence and emotional tension toward their doubles. From the first to the last story in The New York Trilogy, relations between the subject and the other change from reliance and harmony to aggressive and violent competition. However, physical conflict and mental struggle are all solved in The Locked Room. If we see The New York Trilogy as a whole, the formation of Auster’s protagonists’ subjectivity and quest for the self are frustrated in the beginning but somehow achieved through self-understanding in the end. The Locked Room, which can be considered a potential solution, seems to convey a positive attitude toward the problem of identity and self-knowledge and the possibility to construct subjectivity in The New York Trilogy.
I. Literature Review (3)
II.Theoretical Frameworks (7)
Chapter One: A Failed Quest for Subjectivity in City of Glass (14)
I. Traumatic Memories and Broken Selves (15)
II.The Similarity between Quinn and Peter Stillman, Jr. (19)
III.The Journey of Self-Quest (21)
Chapter Two: Persecuted by the Double in Ghosts (34)
I. Mirroring the Double Trouble (37)
II.Aggressivity against Itself (42)
Chapter Three: Haunting and the Haunted in The Locked Room (51)
I. Seeking Identification and Usurping the Desired Other (54)
II.Transgression to Approach Jouissance and Disillusion (63)
Works Cited (79)
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