Historiographic Metafiction In Julian Barnes’s Novel Flaubert's Parrot

Aida Džiho-Šator


Postmodern historical novels, do not treat history in a conventional novelistic manner, they instead take the form of a historical novel with the purpose of ironically revisiting the past. The double coding that Linda Hutcheon distinguishes as one of the basic features of postmodernism is thus best seen in the process of historiographic metafiction, and in his novel Flaubert’s Parrot, Julian Barnes takes double coding to a form of perfection—the reader is compelled to constantly observe Flaubert as a real historical personality and as Barnes’ narrative construct. In his interweaving of history, literature and theory, Barnes explores and deconstructs the traditional notion of history and the reliability of knowledge of the pastthat traditional historiography supposedly renders objectively. In this paper we will examine all elements of historiographic metafiction and offer their detailed analysis.


historiographic metafiction; Flaubert’s Parrot; Julian Barnes

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Barnes, Julian (2008), Floberov papagaj, Biblioner, Banja Luka

Connor, Steven (1996), The English Novel in History: 1950-1995, Routledge,


Hutcheon, Linda, The Poetics of Postmodernism, Routledge, 1988.

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of Fiction“, https://tspace.library.utoronto.ca/bitstream/1807/10252/1/TSpace0167. pdf?q=historiographic-metafiction, preuzeto 5. 1. 2016.

Nicol, Brian (2009), The Cambridge Introduction to Postmodern Fiction,

Cambridge University Press, New York


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