عنوان مقاله [English]
Mannheim believes that democracy is not only political, but also cultural and has its own specific characteristics. According to Mannheim, a democratic culture indicates fundamental features of reduction of distance which means to remove the qualitative distance and or in other words recognizing of the differences.
This feature results in the literature, such as emergence of individuality, Decline of Author role, Narration of his/her life, Remove the Gender stereotypes.
We can analyses New Era works for Children and Adolescents by this Approach for different reasons. ”Emperor of Words” by Ahmad Akbarpour-which work chosen-is one of the works who can be analyzed by this perspective, Therefore, in this paper, we can analyses the Characteristics that make Reduction of distance in the Novel.
This research is based upon descriptive method and qualitative content analysis. In the beginning, concepts and components of Mannheim theories have been explained and categorized, and then the story named The Emperor of Words, written by Ahmad Akbarpour, has been criticized based on these components. In this way, the core question that which components of democratic culture and ways of Reduction of distance have been used by the writer, is answered.
In the Mannheim view, distance have two forms:
1) vertical distance that means qualitative differences between individuals, objects and concepts; and 2) horizontal distance that means differences which are not qualitative and don't give rise to existential superiority. He thinks that distance is not appeared lonely in the level of individual and group relationships, but also includes concepts and object that have cultural implications. Reduction of distance means transformation of vertical distances to horizontal distances. It's obvious that Mannheim's version of Reduction of distance realizes in the democratic culture that is based upon individuality. (Mannheim,2006:65-66)
Recognition of children implies a level of Reduction of distance between children/adolescents and adults that provides possibility for emergence of a literature that is equivalent to adults' literature. Then, appearance of such a literature in the world based on the democratic culture isn't accidental.
According to present epoch requirements, Ahamd Akbarpour in most of his works, including The Emperor of Words, has used modern and post-modern techniques. New children's and adolescent novels, usually include pluralism, subjectivism, unreliable narrators, multi-story sketches, and multi-endings. (Refer to :Nicolajeva, 2008: 533)These techniques provide possibility for emergence of the most elements of democratic culture and Reduction of distance .These democratic elements and Reduction of distance components in The Emperor of Words, as a selected sample children's literature, include:
1. Transition from writer to story character: in this work, the writer is in the same status of heroes from the beginning and drawn into the story space. This endeavor begins from the introduction of work. In the following, too, he announces his presence in the story. He, contrary to realist writers, has not stand out of story that claims presentation of pure narrative from objective reality; but confined himself to internal logic of the story, by presence in it. So, with Reduction of distance from relationship between the writer and story characters, writer becomes a character that must accept story relations logic and can't act beyond this logic.(Refer to:Akbarpour,2013:90,93)
2. Effort for Reduction of distance from reality and story: one of considerable technique in this story is the Brechtian Reduction of distance technique that continuously reminds that the work is story. In the common sense, there is a distance between story and reality that put the story in the second priority. But, in this story, the distance between story world and reality world has been disappeared. The little girl (Suni) enters into the boy story and break down the borders.In return, the boy enters the girl story and encounters with story heroes. So, distances are broke down in other ways,(Ibid:13,34) and two worlds, i.e. the real world of boy and story world of Suni, put at the same level and merge into each other. But, work doesn't end in this point. This story spiral drags reality of the writers into the story, too.(Ibid:89-90)
3. Heroes individuality: the story has different characters that have their special traits and behave based on them. These distinguishing traits make the characters independent and different individuals. So, a horizontal distance is established between them and other persons.
4. Sexual Reduction of distance :Akbarpour in The Emperor of Words, with the selection of Suni character that is daring and norm-breaker, has dealt with sexual Reduction of distance . She eliminates the border lines in the first presence in the story.(Ibid:11) The writer explicitly calls Suni smart and experienced, in the process of Reduction of distance from sexual roles, and she joins with story boy hero as leader.(Ibid:31)
Democracy isn't lonely political, but it is a kind of culture. Democratic culture is based upon the specification of Reduction of distance .With appearance of this culture, a kind of literature emerges that one can call it the democratic culture.
Because of dealing with audiences that previously were always ignored, Children's and Adolescent Literature has a democratic dimension. Meanwhile, some children's and adolescent works show more democratic characteristics than others. These works present a new picture of today literature to audiences by various techniques. Novel named The Emperor of Words have considerable points in this regard.
This novel according to individuality of the story heroes, tries to represents horizontal distance between humane elements of the story. Also, with inclusion of the writer in story heroes, eliminates distance between the writer and heroes. This endeavor shows the narrative characters of the writer's life that annihilate his superior position in relation to the heroes. Akbarpour extends Reduction of distance to sexuality sphere too, and with representation of a non-stereotypes picture of girl story hero, completes the Reduction of distance cycle.