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Article

Mise en abyme as a representation of trauma ("The White Hotel" by D.M. Thomas)

Muravieva L.

The article refers to the problem of representing traumatic experience by means of mise en abyme narrative figure. A methodology for this study was formed at the intersection of rhetorical narratology, cognitive narratology, trauma studies and literary theory. Mise en abyme, specially known as a device creating the self-reflexivity in text, gets new functional impulse in the postmodernist fiction. In particularly, authors resort to the mise en abyme in order to represent individual and collective trauma in narrative. For what purposes this figure is used in the postmodern literary discourse? In which way postmodern narrative practices involve and interpret the historical context of the XXth century? In this article, we develop the assumption that there exist several special models of mise en abyme, one of which aims to reflect the trauma in narrative. Some relevant characteristics of this model are described and illustrated on the example of The White Hotel by D.M. Thomas (1981), they are compositional structure; semantic relations; intermedial and modal realization of the mise en abyme.