Desperado Literature: A Rewriting of Fear as Terror, as Illustrated by Ian Mc Ewan’s Saturday (2005)

  • Lidia Vianu Bucharest University


There are two traditions, we might argue, in the history of literature: the fairy-tale tradition (as I call it) and its opposite. The fairy-tale tradition sees the world as making sense, as leading to the happy fulfillment of expectations. Boy meets girl, boy courts girl, wins girl, marries girl – in simple or complicated arrangements. The fairy-tale tradition hinges on a linear storyline which inevitably leads to a definite denouement. The modernist movement is the first attempt at opposing the fairy tale tradition, at proving that life is not a system (‘a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged’ – Virginia Woolf,The Common Reader), but chaos (‘a luminous halo surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end’ – Woolf again). 

Author Biography

Lidia Vianu, Bucharest University
Lidia Vianu is Professor of Contemporary British Literature and Director of the Centre for Translation and Interpretation of the Contempoary Text at the University of Bucharest. Her work includes poetry, novels, translations and learning manuals
How to Cite
Vianu, Lidia. 2006. “Desperado Literature: A Rewriting of Fear As Terror, As Illustrated by Ian Mc Ewan’s Saturday (2005)”. FORUM: University of Edinburgh Postgraduate Journal of Culture & The Arts, no. 02 (June).
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