Subjective Politics in The Pale King

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This article argues that The Pale King explores the relationship between feelings and political views. There are some sections of the novel in which characters make seemingly straightforward arguments about the political importance of values and attitudes like discipline, civic duty rather than duty to self, adultness and self-possession. However, this article traces the ways in which these ideas and phrases recur across The Pale King, the unexpected contexts in which they reappear and the transformations in meaning they consequently undergo. In this way, it shows that, for the book's characters, emotional, subjective life significantly contributes to—but also repeatedly unbalances and undermines—persuasively professed political opinion.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnglish Studies
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)59-69
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

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