Chapter

Pseudonymity, Third‐personality, and Anonymity as Disturbances in <i>fin de siècle</i> Auto/biography: ‘Mark Rutherford’, George Gissing, Edmund Gosse and Others

Max Saunders

in Self Impression

Published in print March 2010 | ISBN: 9780199579761
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191722882 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579761.003.0004
Pseudonymity, Third‐personality, and Anonymity as Disturbances in fin de siècle Auto/biography: ‘Mark Rutherford’, George Gissing, Edmund Gosse and Others

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This is the first of four chapters exploring the turn‐of‐the‐century disturbances in the relation between life‐writing and fiction. It argues that ‘autobiography’ begins to seem a problematic category in the period, and gets displaced towards fiction. The chapter focuses on ‘Mark Rutherford’, not just for his autobiography, but for his later inclusion of the story ‘A Mysterious Portrait’. The concept of the heteronym is introduced, to be developed in Chapters 7 and Chapter 8. Other authors discussed here include George Gissing (The Private Papers of Henry Ryecroft), H. G. Wells (Boon), Henry Adams, Samuel Butler (The Way of All Flesh), and Edmund Gosse (Father and Son). The various displacements of auto/biography are shown to complicate Lejeune's concept of the autobiographic contract guaranteeing the identity of author, narrator, and subject.

Keywords: pseudonymity; third‐personality; anonymity; heteronymity; heteronym; fin de siècle; Auto/biography; Autobiography; Mark Rutherford; William Hale White; The Autobiography of Mark Rutherford; A Mysterious Portrait; George Gissing; The Private Papers of Henry Ryecroft; H. G. Wells; Boon; Henry Adams; Samuel Butler; The Way of All Flesh; Edmund Gosse; Father and Son; Philippe Lejeune

Chapter.  28296 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Studies (19th Century)

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