“A Refusal of Strict Patterns of Interpretation”: Metaphor, Narrative, and Literary Connections in Katherine Mansfield’s “The Fly”

Elena Glotova


This paper explores how narrative and metaphor combine to articulate the moral and ideological message in a short story “The Fly” by Katherine Mansfield. The research addresses some of the most popular interpretations of the story that demonstrate its ambiguity and intertextual connections. The story metaphorical language is compared with the metaphorical patterns that account for symbolism in a related short story “Small Fry” by Anton Chekhov. The paper argues that cognitive stylistic approach to narrative study can provide the necessary tools to explain the patterns of imagery that produce the story ambiguity. Personification as an important ontological metaphor generates patterns that rationalize the formation of symbolic individuality in existence. 

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