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Volume :24 Issue : 96 2006      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

The Effect Of Regionalism On Western Canadian Fiction With A Particular Look At W.O. Mitchell's Novel Who Has Seen The Wind

Auther : Mohammad Badawi Shahal

This paper is divided into three parts. The first is a discussion of western Canadian regional literary criticism with specific attention paid to the main critical trends. The second part is a discussion of the central issues that contribute to our understanding of the regions influence on the quality of the fiction. The third part attempts to apply some of the conclusions to W.O. Mitchell's novel who has seen the wind.

The most dominant trend in Western Canadian literary criticism attributes a disproportionate role to the impact of the peculiar western landscape upon the mind of the people and upon their artistic production. It puts the individual the mind of the people and upon their artistic production. It puts the individual in direct confrontation with what it considers to be an alien landscape. The opposite trend reverses the roles of the individual and nature without any further modifications, so that man is seen as the active participant who imposes his attitudes upon the interaction between the individual and his human environment.

W.O. Mitchell's who has seen the wind is a reaction against the two conflicting interpretations of the Canadian west that were dominant in the fiction of his time. It is a realistic attempt to depict all the contradictions present in the region and at  dispersing the illusions implanted in the mind of the westerners. This aim necessitated a panoramic representation of a  wide section of the Western society in order to provide a new and comprehensive vision of the entire spectrum of the interacting forces.

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