Chapter

Sainthood-towards-Death: <i>Magnus</i>

Timothy C. Baker

in George Mackay Brown and the Philosophy of Community

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print June 2009 | ISBN: 9780748638123
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651788 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748638123.003.0003
Sainthood-towards-Death: Magnus

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This chapter takes a look at Magnus, Brown's central work. It sheds some light on the way Brown imagines sacrifice as the centre of communal life. It studies Brown's rebalancing of the tension between spiritual and historical signification and his use of the framework of Magnus's life to study the relationship between individuals and the community. It examines the three primary narratives of the life and death of Magnus, along with the dangers of hagiography that Brown faced during his first major attempt at writing the Magnus narrative. It notes that the novel is a blend of modern and medieval styles, and looks at the nature of sacrifice and the ways Brown treats the moment of death.

Keywords: sacrifice; communal life; life and death; hagiography; Magnus narrative; moment of death

Chapter.  16676 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (20th Century onwards)

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