The "wooden substitute" in Graham Swift's The Son, or the futher step in the de-familiarizing transition from modernism to postmodernism


  • Juan Jesús Aguilar Osuna



Swift, Graham, The Son, Literatura inglesa, Relato, Relaciones familiares, Alegoría, Lenguaje metafórico, Modernismo, Posmodernismo


Graham Swift, as a postmodernist writer, partakes of the ontological defamiliarizing spirit that has become "the dominant" in the literature of the second half of the twentieth century. His short story The Son is a micro-scale version of the way in which he -by exploring problematic family bonds, most of them non-biological parent-child correspondences- literally de-familiarizes in his longer works the artificiality of the referential relationship that is assumed to exist between a supposedly objective reality and man's representation/creation of it. In this way, translating family relationships into referential bonds between signs and their referents, The Son can be approached as an allegorical dramatization of a further development in the consciousness of defamiliarization that helps to trace a transitional movement from modernism to postmodernism. This awareness of the hiatus in referential bonds and of its further implications may not be pleasant for everybody, but it is definitely liberating.



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How to Cite

Aguilar Osuna, Juan Jesús. 2000. “The ‘wooden Substitute’ in Graham Swift’s The Son, or the Futher Step in the De-Familiarizing Transition from Modernism to Postmodernism”. Alicante Journal of English Studies / Revista Alicantina De Estudios Ingleses, no. 13 (November):7-20.