Written in Blood: Writing Autobiography Through the Lens of Magical Realism
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This dissertation investigates the subjective nature of autobiography and how magical realism can be used to inject objectivity and authenticity into the genre. Heavily influenced by Jeanette Winterson’s Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit (1985) the creative part of my dissertation is a bildungsroman based on the events of my life. Written in Blood sees the protagonist, who shares my name, recounts the ways in which she loses seven pieces of her heart, with each recollection finding its way into the hands of a mysterious man who meets her on a train and helps her reconcile with her past. Accompanying the dissertation is an artistic representation of the letters as I imagined them to be read on the train. They are covered in red oil paint, a medium which takes a while to dry and therefore leaves a physical mark on the reader, encouraging tactile interaction with the creative piece. The critical reflection of Written in Blood explores the way in which magical realism helps to maintain authenticity and objectivity whilst writing autobiography. With specific reference to Winterson, Winman, and Emin in particular, I reflect upon the ways in which I have incorporated the experimentation of linear time, the injection of magical components, and the challenges faces whilst writing magical realism in my piece.
BA (Hons) English and Creative Writing
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