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Elements of Naturalism in McTeague by Frank Norris

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.4, No. 6)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 1721-1732

Keywords : McTeague; Frank Norris; naturalism.;

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Naturalism as a literary theory emerged in the 19th century in reaction to different philosophical,, scientific, and socio economical developments of the time. Particularly Charles Darwin's theory of origin of species and August Comte's philosophy of positivism gave impetus to the inception of naturalism. But literary naturalism was first proposed and formulated by the French Novelist Emile Zola in 1970s. Preparing the whole manifesto of naturalism, Zola universally labeled as the founder of literary naturalism. The theory firmly propagates the scientific observation of life: In literary writing it heavily lies on objective and empirical presentation of human being in its environments. Hence, this paper attempted to examine the basic tenets of naturalism in the novel McTeague by Frank Norris. The study proceeded from illuminating the background and concept of naturalism in the first chapter of the paper to providing the framework that the study to investigate exclusively in chapter two. In this second chapter the concerns of the paper are summarized through illustrating the cannons of naturalism. The last section of the paper, chapter three, is the part to interpret and analyze the literary element of naturalism in regard for the novel McTeague by Frank Norris. Here, the basic elements of naturalism mentioned: determinism, lower class plausible characters, objectivity, immoral contents, language of the actual world and pessimism are illustrated through discussion and substantiation of text extracts. The analysis is performed efficiently in a way to show each elements of naturalism as appeared in the naturalist novel under study: McTeague so as to demonstrate how naturalism is applied in literary writing. Hence, the analysis conducted examining each elements of the theory by substantiating representative extracts from the text.

Last modified: 2020-02-14 19:10:45