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Type: Theses
Title: The Transformation of Expatriates through Turning to the Foreign
Author: Velde, Christine Robyn
Issue Date: 2014
School/Discipline: School of Humanities
Abstract: This thesis, “The Transformation of Expatriates through Turning to the Foreign”, has two components which constitute Volume 1 and Volume 2. Volume 1 is a literary memoir, “Bound: An Expatriate‘s Journey to China and Beyond”, which explores a ten-year period in the life of “Kristen”, an Australian expatriate in Shanghai. Although this memoir focuses on my own life, I adopted a similar Chinese pinyin version of my name (“Kristen”), to distance myself from my experiences and to write about them in a more objective way. Volume 2 presents the exegesis, “Xenotropism and the Awakening of Literary Expatriatism through Writing Memoir”. It provides a theoretical analysis of xenotropism, undertakes an analysis of three prominent writers in China‘s history and explores the relationship between xenotropism and its complexities and challenges, and the writing of memoir and its impact on mental health. Parts I, II and III of the exegesis are investigated through literary research and the use of a qualitative, narrative research design. This literary form of qualitative research is used to develop the research instruments and to carry out interviews with 11 expatriates in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Contemporary and historical photographs are incorporated to create a dialogue with Shanghai and to illustrate some ideas in the memoir “Bound”. Critical and literary sources such as memoirs written by Asian and western writers are examined together. Rebecca Saunder‘s Concept of the Foreign provides many theoretical ideas about xenotropism. Writers, such as Judith Barrington in Writing the Memoir, provide an explanation of the relationship between memory and the memoir genre. Julia Lin‘s Twentieth Century Women’s Poetry is examined to provide a poetic emphasis to the writing of memoir. Poetry was considered integral to the writing of the memoir because it provides a more layered and visual meaning, than prose alone can express. The research findings contribute to new knowledge in that they illustrate that xenotropism, or “turning to the foreign”, results in both personal and artistic development, an understanding and acceptance of different cultures that facilitates the writing of a memoir. The findings show that the writing of memoir is a cathartic process which has positive benefits for mental health. Although there have been discussions about challenges faced through East to West migrations, the literature about West to East migrations is meagre. Yet these migrations are becoming more frequent now due to the advances of technology and the fact that people‘s work increasingly involves a global role. “Bound” helps to fill this gap in the literature. Together Volume 1, the memoir ―Bound‖ and Volume 2, the exegesis “Xenotropism and the Awakening of Literary Expatriatism through Writing Memoir” exemplify the craft of memoir written through living in a foreign country, and they explain how this is different from writing from home. The exegesis explicates the creation of “Bound” from a combination of personal, research-based, literary and theoretical perspectives.
Advisor: Castro, Brian
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Humanities , 2014.
Keywords: transformation
creative writing
Provenance: Vol. 1 [Novel]: The Memoir: Bound: an expatriate’s journey to China and beyond -- v. 2 [Exegesis]: Xenotropism and the awakening of literary expatriatism through writing memoir.
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01front.pdfNovel470.14 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
02whole.pdfNovel3.14 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
03front.pdfExegesis497.54 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
04whole.pdfExegesis898.1 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
PermissionsLibrary staff access only394.05 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
Restricted_1Library staff access only3.19 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
Restricted_2Library staff access only895.96 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

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