Dissertation: Amihay, The Imagetext Turn in the Hebrew Novel

Amihay, Ofra. Migrating Images: The Imagetext Turn in the Hebrew Novel. New York University, 2014.

 

URL: http://search.proquest.com/docview/1518939613

 

Abstract

This dissertation examines the effect of twentieth-century “new media” models on literature, in the form of the late twentieth-century wave of literary works in which visual images play a central poetic role. Demarcating this body of works as an independent cultural turn, I label this “the imagetext turn” thus following two groundbreaking terms coined by W. J. T. Mitchell, “the pictorial turn” and “imagetext.” Based on philosophical discussions regarding the egalitarianism behind text and image hybrids (Benjamin, Rancière, Mitchell), and theories of the democratic nature of the novel (Auerbach, Lukács, Bakhtin) and photography (Sontag, Barthes, Azoulay), I focus on the marriage of novels and photographs. The case study for this exploration is three contemporary Israeli novelists: Yoel Hoffmann, Ronit Matalon, and Michal Govrin. Following a survey of the approach towards the visual image in Modern Hebrew literature, I identify their works as comprising the “imagetext turn” in Hebrew literature while marking their importance within a general literary development, primarily through a comparison to W. G. Sebald’s novels. My study of Hoffmann analyzes the web of Others in his novels through the photographic mechanism of the negative, suggesting the juxtaposition of text and photographs in How Do You Do Dolores echoes the Other behind text, place, and language in all his work. In my analysis of Matalon I discuss the double role photographs play in Matalon’s pursuit of postcolonial ideas in The One Facing Us, operating both as “portable roots” and as “poetic immigrants,” thus offering a subversive reading of reality that undermines nostalgia. Finally I show how through an intricate combination of narrative and visual images Govrin creates in Snapshots a literary representation of both the ideals and the blind spots of the 1990s left-wing movement of secular return to Jewish sources in Israel.

Subject: Comparative literature; Middle Eastern literature; Judaic studies

Classification: 0295: Comparative literature; 0315: Middle Eastern literature; 0751: Judaic studies

Identifier / keyword: Language, literature and linguistics, Social sciences, Hebrew literature, Govrin, Michal, Photography, Matalon, Ronit, Sebald, W. G., Hoffmann, Yoel

Number of pages: 308

Publication year: 2014

Degree date: 2014

School code: 0146

Source: DAI-A 75/07(E), Jan 2015

Place of publication: Ann Arbor

Country of publication: United States

ISBN: 9781303805424

Advisor: Feldman, Yael

Committee member: Hirsch, Marianne; Mann, Barbara E.; Engel, David; Kaplan, Marion

University/institution: New York University

Department: Hebrew and Judaic Studies

University location: United States — New York

Degree: Ph.D.

Source type: Dissertations & Theses

Language: English

Document type: Dissertation/Thesis

Dissertation/thesis number: 3614848

ProQuest document ID: 1518939613

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