Thursday 08th of June 2023


«My dream to become somebody else»: The Dissociative Desire in Theodor Kallifatides’ The Past Is Not a Dream

Francesca Zaccone, Sapienza Università di Roma pdf_icon_30x30


Abstract: Theodor Kallifatides’ autobiography, published in Greece in 2012 under the title Ta perasmena den einai oneiro (The past is not a dream) brings together in a single text many of the themes expressed in his literary works, and includes explicit and implicit references to his previous oeuvre.

Taking into account René Girard’s literary theory of mimetic desire and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick’s theory of homosocial desire, the paper offers a close reading of Ta perasmena den einai oneiro focused on the process of emancipation taking place in the book. Specifically, it explores the ways in which the subject-narrator uses the text and the writing process to describe and deconstruct his Greek masculinity and finally build a new gendered and national identity mediated by women, while at the same time re-writing his previous literary production in the light of his new self-awareness.



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