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By Michael Evans (auth.)

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Georges, like his forerunners Lucius, Gerard, and Marcel, is mesmerised by the colour 'pink' on several occasions including his escape from captivity when the first object he sights is a pink rag draped over a hawthorn hedge ('Ia tache rose luisant faiblement dans Ia penombre' (p. 251)), 69 and also during his nocturnal exploration of Corinne's body ('lappant son chose rose' (p. 257)). A few pages later the text operates a double shift between the two contexts by pivoting precisely on the words 'rosee' and 'rose': les aubes grises l'herbe aussi etait grise couverte de rosee que je buvais Ia buvant par Ia toute entiere Ia faisant entrer en moi toute entiere [ .

Equally, the spatial context may be taken to be the same. A few pages later, however, the first narrative break ('eclat de narration') occurs. The narrative has been unfolding a series of disconnected descriptions of moments from the past relating the experiences of Georges, the narrator, at the disastrous battle of La Meuse in 1940, when suddenly there is a break in the narration: Ouais! ] (p. 20)7 The displacement affects both the temporal and the spatial narrative framing of the opening pages.

This, as was seen earlier with reference to Uspensky's discussion of the depiction of minor characters in Kafka's The Metamorphosis, is one of the main functions of the structure of frame as alternation of style. Thus although the foregrounded space drawn by linear perspective appears to be the antithesis of undifferentiated sameness by the fact that its immediate effect is to impose its distinctive features on the consciousness of the observer, it nevertheless necessarily entails the visible presence of the indeterminate.

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