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Type: Theses
Title: Deterrence vivarium: a collection of stories and exegesis
Author: Gabriel, Matthew
Issue Date: 2017
School/Discipline: School of Humanities
Abstract: The thesis Deterrence Vivarium is made up of a creative component and an exegesis. The creative component is a collection of eight pieces of fiction ranging in style and length, from microfictions to short stories and concluding with a novella. The opening story “Amsterdam” begins with the protagonist attempting to deal with the disintegration and loss of a relationship. The world around them reflects this sense of decay and the central character’s helplessness in taking control in a world whose threat encroaches upon his very perception of the physical space around him. The story “ONFF” follows on by inviting the reader into the narrator’s willful misperception of the world around them, using a room in his parent’s house to teach found electronic objects a new way of thinking and being. “jesussaves82” is an online date gone wrong. Both participants are more concerned with the idea of connecting with another person, rather than thinking about who that person may be. With one of them acting like Jesus, it is bound to fail. “The Suitcase” is a story of memory in which the disappearance of a father and the finding of an old man with Alzheimer’s on the street coincide for a mother and child. “Deterrence Vivarium”, the title piece, looks at the method a couple on the cusp of retirement take to eradicate a series of older selves that are scaling their back wall and making camp in their yard. “To My Son” is an epistolary short story in which a father leaves a beautifying face brace patent for what he sees and declares is his ugly son. He hopes it will redeem with wealth his failure as a father so far. “Imago” finds the central character turned into a copy of Kafka’s Metamorphosis in the bedroom of a woman who took him home in a failed one-night stand. The final piece, “By Numbers”, is a novella that follows Callum Ryder, a man who has left his job for no particular reason beyond his dislike for his work. He redeems an offer for a free cosmetic procedure he found in his spam folder and finds himself entwined in the madness of Doctor Hensen and his elusive partner in their activities. The exegetical component acts as a critical map of the influences and motivations that are embedded in the creative process of the collection’s construction. It traces the relation of these pieces to a broader context, including the textual, the conceptual and social. It looks at the role and relationship of the exegesis and its purpose. And finally, draws out specific aspects of the writing as a collection, from its humor to its underlying concerns, and argues that in spite of the limits and breakdown of communication and language that are reflected in these stories, there is in turn a vital need to attempt to move towards empathy and understanding.
Advisor: Prosser, Rosslyn Winifred
Edmonds, Phillip Winston
Dissertation Note: Thesis (M.Phil.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Humanities, 2017.
Keywords: creative writing
short story
contemporary Australian fiction
Provenance: This electronic version is made publicly available by the University of Adelaide in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. This thesis may incorporate third party material which has been used by the author pursuant to Fair Dealing exceptions. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material you wish to be removed from this electronic version, please complete the take down form located at:
DOI: 10.4225/55/5926434287293
Appears in Collections:Research Theses

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01front.pdfNovel148.6 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
02whole.pdfNovel499.97 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
03front.pdfExegesis119.18 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
04whole.pdfExegesis447.73 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
PermissionsLibrary staff access only203.04 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
RestrictedLibrary staff access only812.53 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

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