The Trap of Freedom: An Interpretation of >Revolutionary Road< from the Perspective of Fromm's Freedom [自由的陷阱:从弗洛姆自由观视角解读《革命之路》], Master thesis, Foreign Language and Literature (English Literature), Zhejiang Normal University, Jinhua, Zhejiang, China 2019 [application of Fromm's theories to art].

  • 理查德·耶茨作为20世纪美国文学史上长期被忽略的的伟大作家之一,其作品的时代意义和独特思考发人深省。耶茨最为经典的的处女作《革命之路》,在1961年出版当年就获得美国国家图书奖提名,之后更是凭借电影版的获奖使得耶茨重新回归大众的视野。《革命之路》不仅冷酷地展现了自然主义者悲观宿命论式的世界观,而且用最真实的笔触揭露现世人类的生存和选择困境。文中主人公们在愈加强烈渴望独立与自由的同时,不得不在孤独失意的漩涡中面对丧失自由的不幸。而同时期的社会心理学家弗洛姆提出的自由理论是对同一历史阶段此问题的研究和反思。弗洛姆指出现代社会人们在追求自由的过程中,极易陷入消极自由的陷阱,从而导致脱离了真正的积极自由。目前关于《革命之路》的研究大多通过叙述技巧、女性主义和现代主义来分析人物和主旨,本论文运用社会心理学家弗洛姆的自由理论为《革命之路》提供新的研究思路,分析悲剧成因和解决自由困境的理论方法。本论文由五个部分组成。引言部分简要介绍作家和《革命之路》,阐述本论文的研究理论、研究意义和研究结构。第一章分析了有关理查德·耶茨和《革命之路》的国内外研究成果,同时概述弗洛姆自由理论的主要观点,为全文奠定理论基础。第二章论述了《革命之路》中不同人物陷入自由陷阱的过程,以及他们在消极自由的影响下呈现的痛苦处境。第三章结合弗洛姆自由观分析了《革命之路》中人物陷入自由陷阱的原因,即当时的社会文化以及家庭等因素都诱导着主人公们追求消极自由。第四章分析了解决自由困境的不同方式。主人公们尝试采取心理逃避机制来摆脱消极自由的痛苦,但是最终都以完全失去自由而告终,进而揭示了真正的积极自由需要爱和创造性的活动。本文的结论部分对《革命之路》所反映的自由陷阱进行总结。《革命之路》中人物所追求的自由实则是自由陷阱下的消极自由,而只有追求积极自由才能避免悲剧的发生。
  • Richard Yates, who has been neglected for a long time, is one of the greatest writers of the 20th century in American literature. Among his unique thought-provoking works featured by time significance, Revolutionary Road, his maiden work as well as the most classic one, was nominated National Book Award in 1961 and also brought Yates back to the public based on its award-winning movie version. Revolutionary Road not only portrays the pessimistic and fatalistic world outlook of naturalists ruthlessly, but exposes the survival and selection dilemma faced by human beings in modern society. Characters were increasingly eager for independence and freedom, yet, they were also forced to face the misfortune of losing freedom in the eddy of loneliness and frustration. The freedom theory proposed by social psychologist Erich Fromm, who was contemporary to Yates, studies and reflects the freedom predicament of their era. Fromm indicates that people in modern society are tended to be caught in the trap of negative freedom in the process of pursuing freedom, leading to the separation from the positive freedom authentically. Most of current research focuses on the narrative techniques, feminism and modernism, serving as the analysis of characters and theme, while this thesis provides a new approach to Revolutionary Road with Fromm’s freedom theory for analyzing the factors of tragedy and the theoretical methods to tackle with the freedom dilemma. This thesis is composed of five chapters. The part of introduction briefly introduces the writer and his work Revolutionary Road, accompanied by describing the relevant theory, significance and structure of the thesis.– Chapter One analyzes the research on Richard Yates and Revolutionary Road at home and abroad, meanwhile, it gives an overview of Fromm’s freedom theory, laying the foundation for analysis theoretically.– Chapter Two discusses the process of characters’ getting into the trap of freedom, bearing great pain in the influence of negative freedom.– Chapter Three studies the reasons from the perspective of Fromm’s freedom theory for characters in Revolutionary Road being trapped in the negative freedom, for which protagonists are induced to seek because of society, culture and family.– Chapter Four expounds the different ways adopted by characters to settle the freedom predicament. Protagonists adopt mental escape mechanism to relieve from the suffering of negative freedom, though, ended by losing their freedoms similarly to further discover the truth that positive freedom is in need of love and creative activities.– In conclusion, this thesis summarizes the analysis of freedom trap reflected in Revolutionary Road. In effect, the freedom pursued by the characters in Revolutionary Road is negative freedom under the trap of freedom, however, only the pursuit of positive freedom can avoid the tragedy. [Author's translation]

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Author:Ziping Fu
Document Type:Dissertations
Year of first Publication:2019
Release Date:2022/05/04
Format:no download and copy possible
Writings about Erich Fromm (Secondary Literature):Dissertations / Dissertationen
Erich Fromm's Library and Erich Fromm Archive:Dissertations / Dissertationen
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