Kärleken dekonstruerad : En analys av Hjalmar Söderbergs Den allvarsamma leken
Den allvarsamma leken (1912) by Hjalmar Söderberg has been regarded as one of the greatest love novels of Swedish literature. The story about Arvid Stjärnblom and Lydia Stille and their extramarital love is marked by timeless universality.
In this essay, I will examine this notion of love as a prediscursive value, by means pro¬vided by foremost poststructuralist theory. With Derrida’s conception of deconstruction, the analysis will reveal the constructedness of the true love in Söderbergs novel. Examinating typi¬cal logocentric binarisms the essay will show that the notion of true love is constituting a term in an oppositional relation with, in this specific case, the marriage sanctioned by society. This binarism is itself founded with the same principles as the by Derrida much disputed opposi¬tional pair of the spoken and written word.
Further, with true love understood as a discursive construction, the inquiry will show that this construction presuppose the notion of the public and private spheres of bourgeois society, where the public is reserved for the male and the private for the female. This will lead to a discussion of the constructedness status of sex and gender, which will show that the love ex¬pressed in the relationship of Arvid and Lydia is to be understood as a considerable part of heterosexual matrix, that is, the regulative framework which, according to Judith Butler, consti¬tute the rules for how intelligible sex and gender is to be produced.
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