'You Might Have Time to Think': Alienation and Discontent in Factotum and My Year of Rest and Relaxation
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This thesis will examine discontent in Charles Bukowski’s Factotum and Ottessa Moshfegh’s My Year of Rest and Relaxation and analyse the two protagonists’ dissatisfaction through Karl Marx’s theory of alienation, to show the relationship between the two protagonists’ discontent and their labour. The Marxist interpretation of the two novels will contextualise the protagonists’ behaviour through their respective class backgrounds and the instances of their labour, to argue how their discontent can be attributed to their alienation. A Nietzschean interpretation of theirattitudes and worldview will be provided to contrast the Marxist argument, in order to examine the role nihilism plays in the two protagonists’ discontent and to discuss how this interpretation fits into the overarching Marxist argument of the thesis.