The Treacherous Double Vision of "A Moveable Feast"

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Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Thursday, February 5, 20152:00PM - 4:00PM208N, North House, Munk School of Global Affairs
1 Devonshire Place
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CSUS and F. Ross Johnson Distinguished Speaker Series


Although many critics discuss the importance of World WarI to Hemingway (Cowley, Wilson, Crews), few consider the war in A Moveable Feast (1964). Much of the memoir is narrated through a voice that entwines Hemingway’s perspective with that of his former mentor, Gertrude Stein. Through this complex act of ventriloquism, Hemingway attacks former allies like Stein in a voice that bespeaks his indebtedness to them. He thus exploits F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “double vision” to simultaneously valorize and undermine his autobiographical “I,” recognizing that after WWI, he could no longer conceive of a self disconnected from others – even in the egocentric genre of autobiography.

Tony Fong is a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for the Study of the United States, Munk School of Global Affairs, for 2014-15. Fong recently received his PhD in English at the University of Toronto, and works on issues of contemporary literature and film, focusing especially on life writing, ethics, and gender/sexuality studies.

His dissertation, “Authoring Death: Mourning Masculinity in American Autobiography,” for which he received the A.S.P. Woodhouse Prize for the best dissertation defended in the Department of English, probes representations of the “unhealthy” male bodies that permeate American personal narratives. By exposing the different ways the auto-biographical text manifests the writer’s failing corporeality—even when he struggles to conceal it—“Authoring Death” challenges the myth of the self-made and invulnerable man of American autobiography. Fong’s next book-length project, Starving Art: Sacrifice, Ethics, and American Hunger Narratives, examines the centrality of hunger within American culture by studying how literary and visual narratives diminish the body and its appetites. By approaching hunger as a sacrificial act, this project posits an ethics of self-deprivation. Fong’s writing can also be found in Philip Roth Studies, University of Toronto Quarterly, and The Huffington Post.


Stella Kyriakakis


Tony Fong
Visiting Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Centre for the Study of the United States, Munk School of Global Affairs

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