Abstract

Humpty Dumpty began as a caricature of Charles I, the king toppled by Puritans. Lewis Carroll's better-known version moves the story of regime change to the scene of language, with Humpty's linguistic arrogance pitted against Alice's conventional view of language. Paul Auster recycles both figures, situating the egg in a site-specific American battle between the Puritan dream of a transparent language and the postmodern recognition of its impossibility. New York becomes the contemporary looking-glass stage for an allegorical struggle between incompatible language regimes, which is also a story about the dissolution of the Dumptyesque sovereign subject.

pdf

Additional Information

ISSN
1080-658X
Print ISSN
0026-7724
Pages
pp. 1-16
Launched on MUSE
2011-03-16
Open Access
No
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.