Conspiracy, Agential Angst and Resistance in Joseph Heller’s Catch-22 and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451
MetadataVis full innførsel
OriginalversjonShrestha, K. (2021) Conspiracy, Agential Angst and Resistance in Joseph Heller’s Catch-22 and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 (Master's thesis). University of Agder, Kristiansand.
This study explores how powerful institutions influence the lives of individuals in the post-war American society as presented in two novels: Joseph Heller’s Catch-22 and Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. It focuses on the interpretation of the psychological angst of the characters, their realization of external influences and resistance for the sakes of freedom and individuality. To critically analyze the issue of agential anxiety, this study mainly draws upon Timothy Melley’s concept of conspiracy which he views as a manipulation of the populace without their knowledge. The larger institutions in the society strategically produce oppressive discourses and a restrictive sense of normativity, and hence are detrimental to individual autonomy and the integrity of personality. The feeling of loss of autonomy causes intense anxiety and agency panic in individuals. Thus, individuals are required to perceive themselves as antithetical to institutional systematization and stand out from the collective identity to defend their interior self and retain full agency. Reasoning and resistance to the manipulative scheme of larger institutions prove to be the remedies.
Master´s thesis in English (EN500)