The Fritzl case: the literature as a tool for exploring the monstrous

Gerardo Iandoli

Abstract


The article analyzes two novels that, through fiction, try to explore a crime story, the Fritzl case: Elisabeth by Paolo Sortino and Claustria by Régis Jauffret. The aim of the article is to show how the fictional narrative structure can help to reflect on actions that go far beyond the common norm. Through the “counterpart theory” of David Lewis, the article shows how these fictions create alternative worlds to the current one, adapting the factual data to their own narrative needs. From these “similar” worlds, but not “identical” to ours, the reader can draw a judgment not on the case itself, which remains inaccessible in its monstrosity, but on the relationship that everyone establishes with human action. The exceptional case, then, becomes a point from which to look at the possibilities of the human being in general, in order to develop a greater awareness of his own means. From all these considerations it turns out that literature, instead of using these distressing events only to shock or attract attention, becomes a privileged tool for the individual’s ethical maturation.


Keywords


Sortino; Jauffret; Elisabeth; Claustria; Counterpart

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13125/2039-6597/3686

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