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The Labour of Laziness in Twentieth-Century American Literature$
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Zuzanna Ladyga

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474442923

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474442923.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021

Laziness and Tactility in Ernest Hemingway’s The Garden of Eden

Laziness and Tactility in Ernest Hemingway’s The Garden of Eden

(p.168) Chapter 4 Laziness and Tactility in Ernest Hemingway’s The Garden of Eden
The Labour of Laziness in Twentieth-Century American Literature

Zuzanna Ladyga

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter focuses on Ernest Hemingway’s The Garden of Eden as an example of how modernist inoperativity has been wrestled from its embryonic state and given a literary form. Hemingway’s novel captures the tension between creative potency and impotency by dramatizing it as a conflict of two characters Catherine and David Bourne, each haunted by their individual, internal conflict between creative vigor and creative resistance. Hemingway builds his haptic aesthetics around the theme of laziness to speculate about the bodily, sensuous dimension of all creative endeavours. This manipulation of the theme of laziness is a radical attempt at articulating by literary means the sensibility of exhaustion that underlies the modernist love of action. More importantly, however, it is an attempt to comment on the loss of artistic freedoms that the 20th century capitalist biopower has taken away from writers by forcing them to accept and internalize the rules and values of the book market.

Keywords:   Inoperativity, Impotency, Resistance, Performance, Tactility, Ernest Hemingway, Giorgio Agamben

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