Andrea Timár

Senior Core Fellow
Period of Stay: 
October 2019 - June 2020
Eötvös Loránd University
Project Title: 
Dehumanisation and Literature: Representing the Figure of the Perpetrator
Project Abstract: 

The critical study of literature can offer new ways of understanding dehumanization, a hot topic in many disciplines today. This project consists of case studies examining the literary representation of the experience of perpetrators. On the one hand, it surveys dehumanizing literary representations (e.g. of women/slaves/Jews, etc. as “less than human”) that are supposed to invite readers to share the point of view of perpetrator(s). On the other hand, it explores literary representations of dehumanization, which put the process of dehumanization on critical display, generating more complex readerly reactions. Since the response of the audience play crucial role in both the “humanization” and the “dehumanization” of characters, the project particularly wishes to look at the ways in which representations of perpetrators manipulate (create, block, direct, confuse) narrative voice and readerly empathy. This latter is of peculiar relevance today, when our empathetic responses to dehumanization are guided by the media.