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n Acta Germanica : German Studies in Africa - Burton als Held eines transkulturellen Mythos? Zu Der Weltensammler (2006) von Ilija Trojanow
Burton as hero of a transcultural myth? The Collector of Worlds (2006) by Ilija Trojanow
This article investigates mythical structures in Ilija Trojanow's The Collector of Worlds which can be contextualised within processes of transculturalism and hybridity. The assumption is that in The Collector of Worlds, transcultural transformations are staged through mythical structures. This is demonstrated in two examples : first, the motif of 'metamorphosis', which is closely related to initiation processes and rites of passage, and secondly, a mythical 'revelation structure'. The protagonist of The Collector of Worlds, Sir Richard Francis Burton, is characterized by his ability to transform himself while the novel itself follows the structure of a text of revelation. But Trojanow does not only create a literary figure that features hybridity by using mythical systems. Through intertextual references to other literary works, such as Nomade auf vier Kontinenten (Nomad on four Continents), or Mumbai to Mecca (An den heiligen Quellen des Islam), Burton is also stylized into a transcultural hero with whom Trojanow identifies as his interviews show, thus contributing to the self-dramatization of the author.
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