Hristo BOEV, Walking the Streets of the Modern City: Reclaiming Street Space in Dickens’s and Dos Passos’s Representations of Women

Abstract: This paper examines Dickens‟s and Dos Passos‟s portrayals of street space as experienced by women whose presence in the city streets is increasingly felt through Dickens‟s representations of London. This presence is much more visible in Dos Passos‟s depictions of New York in his novel Manhattan Transfer where female inhabitants still preserve some of the patterns of appropriating street space observed in Dickens, examined here by means of tropes of walking rhetoric. If we view walking as talking (de Certeau, The Practice of Everyday Life) and the development of this idea (Augoyard, Step by Step), we will be able to establish a number of tropical similarities, based on Augoyard‟s spatial tropes. These tropes can help us determine the process of reclaiming the street as public space by women in the two represented metropolises, indicative of the changes of women‟s behavior in such spaces, which is reflected in the two writers‟ sensibility marking the rise of the represented Modern City.The essay also seeks the two writers‟ solution to masculinized street space and finds it in a tropological continuity in both, as well as an increased usage of aesthetic heterotopia in Dos Passos, thus New York streets being rendered less hostile, imbued in daydreams.

Key words: street, trope, heterotopia, space, place, event, peritopism, paratopism, abrasion, enunciative, ambivalence, flâneur/flâneuse, metabole, asyndeton, saturation

To cite this article: BOEV, Hristo. “Walking the Streets of the Modern City: Reclaiming Street Space in Dickens’s and Dos Passos’s Representations of Women.” International Journal of Cross-Cultural Studies and Environmental Communication 2.1 (2013): 55-69. Print.

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