FALLING OUT OF THE CENTER – COLLAPSE OF MEANING AND RECONCILIATION IN WILLIAM GOLDING’S FREE FALL AND GRAHAM GREENE’S THE END OF THE AFFAIR
Keywords:Search for meaning, Reality, Modernism, Postmodernism, Stability
The reading of Golding’s Free Fall and Greene’s The End of the Affair from the lens of modernism and postmodernism is helpful to formulate the anxiety to reach towards a totalizing meaning. The crisis of meaning experienced in these novels mirror the prevailing social anxiety of mid-late 20th century in relation to the perception of meaning and truth that faced considerable undermining. What makes these novels special for such analysis is their very treatment of truth and meaning. These novels perform a break from the early modernist tradition in their treatment of truth and meaning overall. It is possible to say that they possess postmodernist innuendos in their treatment of truth and meaning since they show that there can be no transcendental or single meaning, and concepts such as Truth, God, spirit and self are unidentifiable and mostly recognized as non-existent. Their communication does not rest on the success of communication itself, but, rather, on the restrictions and limitations of communication and its vessels which, in turn, reflect the absence of a center of meaning. The vessel to find this meaning seems to disintegrate. There is one significant element that these novels clearly portray: a constant unrest and an incurable anxiety and frustration in the face of humanity’s absurd condition(s) of existence that either needs to be faced or completely avoided for the sake of sanity.
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