Search ETDs:
“The Age of Oddities”: Byronism and the Fictional Representations of Byron
Davis, G. Todd

2003, Doctor of Philosophy, Miami University, English.
“‘The Age of Oddities’: Byronism and the Fictional Representations of Byron,” examines the perpetuation of the Byron legend as a process of mythologizing by both Byron and later authors who alter, expand, or moderate this discourse. The dissertation examines not only the Byronic figure’s constructedness but also how synchronic representations engender a literary history. Chapter 1 investigates how Byron’s self-fashioning deflects a rabidly curious audience’s awareness away from the poet to his performance and draws readerly attention to, as Judith Butler would say, a stylized repetition of acts. Chapter 2 examines how Hans Robert Jauss’s horizons of experience and expectation and exploration of the author/text/audience triangle produce an historically emergent model for how these fictional representations proliferate. It then focuses on reception theory to explicate the construction and recurrence of the Byronic vampire, showing how the Gothic genre was altered and expanded by subsequent refigurings of vampiric representation by such authors as John Polidori, Miranda Seymour, and Tom Holland. Chapter 3 explores how Butler’s performativity explains Byron’s performances and poses, which appear as illusions based upon ostensibly stable identities. It then moves into the paranormal and the scientific realms, in which Byron becomes refashioned both as a supernatural entity, whose psychic exile from corporeal boundaries evokes images of the wandering ghost, and a disembodied spirit captured in a technological matrix and personified as a cyborg. Chapter 4 draws up’n Hans-Georg Gadamer’s hermeneutics to explicate Byron's interstitial position between sanity and madness, elucidating the identificatory myth that seduces subsequent authors and critics. Consequently, it examines how such authors as Lady Caroline Lamb and Percy Bysshe Shelley become ensnared in the interpretive circle, unable to see beyond Byron’s pretense of madness, mistaking it for truth.
Dianne Sadoff (Advisor)
230 p.

Recommended Citations

Hide/Show APA Citation

Davis, G. (2003). “The Age of Oddities”: Byronism and the Fictional Representations of Byron. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

Hide/Show MLA Citation

Davis, G. Todd. "“The Age of Oddities”: Byronism and the Fictional Representations of Byron." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Miami University, 2003. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 25 May 2015.

Hide/Show Chicago Citation

Davis, G. Todd "“The Age of Oddities”: Byronism and the Fictional Representations of Byron." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. Miami University, 2003. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

Files

miami1070042896.pdf (805.25 KB) View|Download