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‘Contrary Emotions’: The Irony of Fear in Ian McEwan’s On Chesil Beach (2007)

Journal: International Journal of English, Literature and Social Science (Vol.4, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 367-372

Keywords : On Chesil Beach; Ian McEwan; irony; fear; sexuality; misunderstanding.;

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The aim of this paper is to show that a peculiar logic of defeating expectations underpins McEwan's On Chesil Beach. The paper posits that situational irony underlies the whole framework of the narrative; and that it generates, maintains and eventually defines the narrative line of the novel. On the other hand, we argue that irony mainly proceeds from fear and misunderstanding. The study shows that the ironic situations in the novel stem mostly from irrational fears relating to sexuality and failure, and a lack of communication between two young lovers in the early years of the sexual liberation movement.

Last modified: 2019-04-10 17:25:51