The literature of the colonized : feminist perspective in the novels of Margaret Duley

Penney, Joan (1986) The literature of the colonized : feminist perspective in the novels of Margaret Duley. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This thesis traces the developing feminist perspective of Newfoundland author Margaret Duley (1894-1968). Her four novels, The Eyes of the Gull (1936), Cold Pastoral (1939), Highway to Valour (1941), and Novelty on Earth (1942), constitute a significant addition to Newfoundland literature and embody a transition from imitation of British tradition to the establishment of Duley's own voice as a Newfoundland woman writer. Duley's novels are clearly feminist in nature, becoming more forceful and outspoken with each new publication. The feminism of her early novels is exhibited often in the use of imagery such as veils, masks, enclosure, and possession; but she moves in her later writing to forthright feminist philosophy and the assertion of the autonomy of the heroines. As an author working in a colonial society, Duley echoes Canadian literary tradition in imitating the literature of Britain as she first begins work as a novelist. She rapidly outgrows models of literature in the British male perspective, however, and, like many nineteenth-century female writers, rejects them. She then moves beyond the implications of her imagery to speak openly from a feminist point of view, thus "de-colonizing" her work, both in terms of geography and gender. In establishing her own position as an author, Duley moves from nineteenth to twentieth-century styles and themes in literature, but, without exception, the work that she produces arises from feminist attitudes and perspectives, uniquely rooted in her experiences in Newfoundland.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/5465
Item ID: 5465
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 94-106.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > English Language and Literature
Date: 1986
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Duley, Margaret, 1894-1968--Criticism and interpretation; Feminism and literature

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