A study of unreliable narration with reference to the Gricean theory based on the novel Life of Pi by Yann Martel

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A study of unreliable narration with reference to the Gricean theory based on the novel Life of Pi by Yann Martel

 

Author: Nicolas, Margaret J. L.
Title: A study of unreliable narration with reference to the Gricean theory based on the novel Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Degree: M.A.
Year: 2013
Subject: Narration (Rhetoric)
Discourse analysis, Narrative.
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Dept. of English
Pages: iii, 72 pages : illustrations
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b2687582
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/7656
Abstract: Unreliable narration is one of the most notable and extensively studied categories of literary analysis (D'hoker & Martens, 2008). However, there have been concerns to whether theories to explain unreliable narration have become inadequate when conducting research on postmodern literary texts. There is a need to refine the theory of unreliable narration when conducting narratological research of analyzing literary texts. In the field of pragmatics, there are studies on how communicators to use language for other communicators to interpret as conveyed (Grice, 1975). The Gricean theory refers to the Cooperative Principle (Grice, 1975). Under this framework, there are four maxims of quality, quantity, relation and manner, which serve as guidelines to effective communication. The framework with its four maxims was devised as a means to explain what was actually meant. The aim of this study is to analyze unreliability with the abovementioned framework and textual signals (Nunning, 1995) through a fictional narrative, Life of Pi (Martel, 2003). Part Three conveys communicators having difficulty trusting one another and on the information being presented. At the same time, there are two versions of the same story which reveals contradictions in the narrator of the story. Results show that there is a relationship between the two perspectives of pragmatics and narratology. This purpose of this research is to contribute to refining the concept of studying unreliable narration.

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