Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Flat ProtagonistsA Theory of Novel Character$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Marta Figlerowicz

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190496760

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190496760.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 February 2021

The Writer

The Writer

(p.49) 2 The Writer
Flat Protagonists

Marta Figlerowicz

Oxford University Press

The second chapter discusses Françoise de Graffigny’s Letters from a Peruvian Woman (1747) and Isabelle de Charrière’s Letters of Mistress Henley (1784). Responding to Nancy Armstrong, the chapter shows that Graffigny and Charrière subvert their period’s fascination with letters as means of affirming the larger significance of small domestic interactions and events. Instead, these two epistolary novelists treat the physical smallness of these letters as a metonymy of their protagonists’ similarly limited scopes of material presence and experience. At the end of both novels, the protagonists no longer look to their letters as measures of their ambitious hopes of being heard and understood. The letters reflect, instead, their frailty and finitude as beings who expect such attention from others.

Keywords:   epistolary novel, character, novel, Nancy Armstrong, Françoise de Graffigny, Letters from a Peruvian Woman, Isabelle de Charrière, Letters of Mistress Henley

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .