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n Acta Germanica : German Studies in Africa - Heterotopie und Diaspora. Zur Identitätsfrage in Elias Canettis Roman Die Blendung
Heterotopia and Diaspora. On the question of identity in Elias Canetti's novel Die Blendung
Kien, the hero of Elias Canetti's novel "Die Blendung", understands identity as egocentric and logocentric. According to a binary logic, he excludes the Other from his private library, a microcosm he defines as his homeland. But for Michel Foucault, libraries are an example of heterotopia. Heterotopia can be understood as a space of transculturality where heterogeneous cultures, philosophies and times are brought together, resisting any reduction to homogeneity. Excluded from his world by Therese, and displaced, Kien aims in a romantic manner to restore his homeland. But Canetti shows that such an attempt results from blindness and leads to his death. Though Canetti does not explicitly propose a model of identity in this novel, he points implicitly through his criticism to a utopian model which can be analyzed as heterotopia. According to Canetti, it is possible to perceive through metamorphosis what he understood as an "acoustic mask".
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