Failed metamorphosis, self-starvation and the innocence of anorexia: an analysis of the vegetarian

Kutlualp, Cansu (2019) Failed metamorphosis, self-starvation and the innocence of anorexia: an analysis of the vegetarian. [Thesis]

[thumbnail of 10219588_CansuKutlualp.pdf] PDF

Download (1MB)


This thesis analyzes Han Kang’s short novel The Vegetarian with a feminist, literary and medical discourse. As I discuss the element of corporeality of metamorphosis in the novel I determine that not only are almost-transformations in the novel are “failed metamorphosis” but also they are thematic charges of Ovidian executions. By doing a comparative reading of Herman Melville’s “Bartleby: the Scrivener" I establish similar narrators and narrations to expand my observation of what makes Yeong-hye, the main character, extremely unique among narratives of anorexia. Discussing various feminist and medical approaches to anorexia, specifically to anorexia nervosa, I conclude that these do not completely fit Yeong-hye. I employ Rudolph Bell’s Holy Anorexia to read Yeonghye as a saint figure as I compare her to one of the saints Bell introduces, Catherine of Siena. In this thesis I suggest that Yeong-hye’s unique anorexia makes her a saint figure because of her obsession with innocence and the post-human way of achieving it by admiring Kang’s way of story-making.
Item Type: Thesis
Uncontrolled Keywords: Anorexia. -- Anorexia nervosa. -- Holy anorexia. -- Vegetarian. -- Metamorphosis. -- Anoreksiya. -- Anoreksiya nervosa. -- Vejetaryen. -- Metamorfoz.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences > Academic programs > Cultural Studies
Depositing User: IC-Cataloging
Date Deposited: 28 Feb 2019 16:50
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2022 10:29

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item