عنوان مقاله [English]
Multiple character is a disintegrated character made up of bits and pieces of other minor characters to form a unified fictional personage. The present study focuses on the emergence of such a character, its characteristic features and its function in the modernist novel Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine (sorkhy-e to az man) and postmodernist novel Azade and her Writer (Azade khanoom va nevisandehash). This techniques in characterization is a popular one in modernist and postmodernist works. However, there is one main difference: while in the modernist novel the aim is to reveal the disintegrated nature of the character’s mind, in postmodernist novel it tries to probe into the ontological nature of the character. The focus in modernist novel is on the mind of the character using interior monologue and stream of consciousness techniques. In other words, each minor character in the novel tends to represent one of the mental features of the protagonist. In postmodernist novel, however, reality and fiction intermingle: fictional and real characters are treated in the same way.
Review of Literature
The main concern in the present research is examining the notion of multiple character in the two novels namely the modernist Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine and the postmodernist Azade and her Writer. Previous studies on these novels do not refer to multiple character. In addition, our search before the study did not show any reference to the same concept. Hence this study seems to be unprecedented in this respect. It should be noted that the technique of introducing multiple character is mainly found in modernist and postmodernist novels and can be considered as playing an important role in epistemological frameworks of these novels. Azade and her Writer (1995), a postmodernist novel by Reza Baraheni, has been the subject of many critical analysis.
Among the works written on the subject, one can refer to the following: “What is postmodernist novel? Examining narratological features in Azade and her Writer”, “Reversing the roles: Postmodernist Creativity in Azade and her Writer” both by Hossein Payandeh. The same writer has also written a critique on both Azade and her Writer and Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine in his book Unveiling the Novel. Tadayyoni and Sadeghi have also discussed Azade and her Writer in “The Emergence of the Last Literary School in Iran with an Emphasis on Azade and her Writer” and “Functions of Silence in Reading Persian Literary Texts” respectively.
Other related works include: “Examining Postmodernist Elements in Azade and her Writer”, by Pirooz, Moghaddasi and Fotovat; “Examining Postmodernist style in Iranian Novels” by Rhimbeigi, Barati, and Nasr-e Esfahani; “Documentary Features and Blurring the Borderline between Reality and Fiction in Postmodernist Narratives with an Empahsis on Azade and her Writer” by Yaghoobijanbehsaraee and Mohammadi; “Society as Reflected in Secrets of my Land and Azade and her Writer before and after the Revolution” by Azadarmaki and Zamanisabzi; “Myth and Demythification in Azade and her Writer” by Shahpar-rad in French; “Having the Future World Ring” by Gooran; “Of a Different Kind” by Hajizadeh as well as Sangi’s “Contextual Analysis of Persian Metanarrative” in her Ph.D. dissertation. Farzad Karimi devotes one whole chapter to Azade and her Writer in his book Postmodernist Fiction in Iran.
The second novel studied in the present research is Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine by Sepideh Shamloo published in 2006. Our search for related studies yielded two hits: “Feminine Writing Features in Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine” by Ghasemzadeh and Aliakbari and “Identity Analysis in Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine” by Oskouee.
The abovementioned works have shed light on the dark points of the novels especially Oskouee’s article which has fully addressed the psychological aspects of one of the novels. The article by Yaghoobi Janbeh Saraee and Mohammadi has also proved to be of great help in studying the blurred borderline between fiction and reality.
The study deals with the concept of multiple character and the way minor characters have contributed to the formation of the protagonist. The results show that the fragmented parts of the multiple character are mental figments. In postmodernist fiction, the multiple character mingle reality and fiction and divers personality features are borrowed from other texts and are intertextually linked to one another.
Possessing other character features in modernist and postmodernist novels, the multiple character contributes to epistemological and ontological features of modernist and postmodernist novels respectively. Multiple character can be viewed as an innovative way used for characterization among other modernist and postmodernist features.
Based on the present study, introducing multiple character into Persian modernist and postmodernist novels can enhance the stylistic features of the work. The multiple character in Let Your Ruddiness Be Mine is imaginary in nature resulting from disintegration of the identity. The mental problem can happen in reality although it is not a common one. However, in the mentioned novel it turns out to be a reality and contributes to the dominant epistemological aspect of the work. In Azade and her Writer the multiple character is intertextual in nature. The borderline between reality and fiction is blurred and the real world of the novel has been treated the same as the fictional worlds of other texts. The multiple character here contributes to the dominant ontological aspect of the novel.