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L'expression subjective dans les récits oniriques de la littérature de fiction des Qing

Abstract : This doctoral thesis studies Chinese fictional dream accounts during the 17th-18th centuries. It discusses four works: Liaozhai zhiyi 聊齋誌異 by Pu Songling 蒲松齡 [1640-1715], Zibuyu 子不語 by Yuan Mei 袁枚 [1716-1797], Yuewei caotang biji 閱微草堂筆記 by Ji Yun 紀昀 [1724-1805], Honglou meng 紅樓夢 by Cao Xueqin 曹雪芹 [1715?/1724?-1763?/1764?] and Gao E 高鶚 [1738? - 1815?]. The objective is to analyze various forms of subjective expression in the context of the evolution of that period. Subjectivity is expressed by language and desire, which are thus the two main pillars – linguistic and thematic – of this study. This study draws on both thematic, and textual and philological aspects. It also makes comparisons between common reinvented motifs and narratives that evolved over the centuries. Firstly, this thesis explores the main characteristics of the Chinese dream culture, in particular the notions of “souls” (hun 魂 and po 魄), spirit travelling (shenyou 神遊), as well as the imagination of the invisible world – multiple levels of hell and the irruption of the other world into the daily space. Then, the thesis examines dream accounts of Taoist and Buddhist origins, the subject of which is the realization of the emptiness of human life. Comparisons are drawn with ancient texts so as to explain why specific motifs still appeared in Qing literature, and underline how these motifs were reinvented or rewritten in the 17th-18th centuries. Textual forms are studied by analyzing semantic, narrative, and linguistic tools with which the accounts are constructed. This thesis analyzes the vocabulary and narrative techniques regularly used to reveal the oneiric nature of the tale only after the dream. It also consists of intralingual comparisons that highlight the differences between several versions of a same story, particularly that between classical Chinese and vernacular versions. This demonstrates that the language chosen by the author may imply a subjective stance reflective of the dreamer’s inner self. Thirdly, this thesis focuses on the hidden intention behind dream accounts. Ancient Chinese dream accounts imply that the dream is necessarily linked to an interpretation that is given retrospectively. But Qing authors increasingly tended to subvert this traditional objective, and sometimes even produced dream accounts that had no purpose other than their own originality or aesthetic research – in other words, these were “dreams for dream’s sake”. The last part of this dissertation puts the dream accounts to the test of Lacanian theories of desire, since over the course of the 17th-18th centuries, the expression of desire became an essential component of oneiric accounts. Through elements evocative of characteristic mechanisms of desire as psychoanalysis would describe in the 20th century, some of the Qing oneiric accounts appear to be particularly relevant with respect to how authors constructed subjective fictional characters. This theoretical approach highlights the underlying coherence in the production of dream accounts and its significance in the early modern Chinese era.
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Submitted on : Sunday, May 12, 2019 - 6:30:35 PM
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Aude Lucas. L'expression subjective dans les récits oniriques de la littérature de fiction des Qing. Littératures. Paris Diderot, 2018. Français. ⟨tel-02126767⟩



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