World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies
World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies

2022, Vol. 13, No. 3. - go to content...

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Koroleva O.A. [English canon of the parenting novel in «Swing Time» by Zadie Smith] World of Science. Series: Sociology, Philology, Cultural Studies, 2022, Vol. 13, No. 3. Available at: (in Russian).

English canon of the parenting novel in «Swing Time» by Zadie Smith

Koroleva Olga Andreevna
Lobachevsky State University of Nizhni Novgorod, Nizhni Novgorod, Russia
Institute of Philology and Journalism

Abstract. The article deals with the novel of the modern English writer Zadie Smith in the context of the traditions of the historically developed genre of the novel of education. The time of its formation of the XVIII–XIX centuries, however, this genre construction retains its position in modern literature, developing and changing depending on the period of literary development, direction, style of the writer, while maintaining such characteristics as: the childhood of the hero, the departure from home and a period of study, wandering, in the finale — finding oneself, self-determination. The works of multicultural prose to which this novel belongs often refer to this genre construction, focusing attention not only on the stages of the hero’s maturation, which confirms the analysis of the novel. The article draws attention to the retrospective course of the plot, as a result of which the events of the present develop in parallel with the past, allowing you to see the characters from different points of view. The peculiarity of the figurative system of the novel is associated with the depiction of four female characters (friends, mothers, teachers, pop stars), each of which at a certain stage of life plays an important role in the fate of the main character. In addition, the fate of each of them presents its own micro version of the novel of education. In the course of the study, it was concluded that the main character lives her life, focusing on the above characters, without having her own voice, which is emphasized by the author through the absence of her name, throughout the story the story is told in the first person, but the heroine is not named. Nevertheless, the final partly approaches the traditional end of the upbringing novel, since the heroine’s realization of the need to find her life path is already the beginning of a movement towards self-determination.

Keywords: parenting novel; Sadie Smith; multiculturalism; genre; genre features

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