Death and Home-Work : The Origins of Narrative in The Fortunes of Richard Mahony

Abstract

Mead considers the role of death in the narrative and argues that it is a powerful cultural symbol because of its thematic connections with the idea of home. Home is linked with death and burial throughout the novel. Mahony’s slow dissolution in the asylum and burial beneath the soil of his adopted country leads Mead to the idea of colonisation, but he concludes that ‘there is no possible reconciliation between subject and nation’.

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Published 1 October 1995 in Volume 17 No. 2. Subjects: Biographies, Death, Exile, Fiction, Narrative techniques, Novels & novelists, Quest motif.

Cite as: Mead, Philip. ‘Death and Home-Work : The Origins of Narrative in The Fortunes of Richard Mahony.’ Australian Literary Studies, vol. 17, no. 2, 1995. https://doi.org/10.20314/als.baa1632308.