Date of Award
Master of Arts (MA)
The phenomenon of collecting has been a popular metaphor in Canadian literature throughout its history, but particularly in the literature of the last thirty years. However, there has been little corresponding critical attention. In this thesis, I study how the treatment of the collector/collecting/collection nexus in Alibi and The Puppeteer by Robert Kroetsch, a central figure in the (disputed) Canadian postmodernist movement.
In the introductory chapter, raise some key issues of the collecting phenomenon, which leads to a discussion of the incorporation of collecting and its issues in texts by Canadian authors. I give a brief reading of collecting in John Richardson's Wacousta, which I suggest is the Ur-novel for collecting in Canadian literature. After Richardson, I turn to Kroetsch and his concept of postmodernism, before proposing to argue that the characters in Alibi and The Puppeteer collect as a means of playing "god." In Chapter One, I give a close reading of the character Deemer, who is the primary figure of the godgame. Chapter Two consists of readings of Deemer's opponents in the game. To conclude the thesis, I discuss the use of collecting in other novels by Kroetsch, and I finish with some general observations on collecting.
Bruce, Barbara S., "A Shadowy Godgame: Collectors, Collecting, and Collections in Robert Kroetsch's Alibi and The Puppeteer" (1998). Open Access Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5932.
McMaster University Library