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'The two novels, Dead Europe and The Slap, are filled with the ‘smells and expressions of the male body (Tsiolkas 2008:1). Christos Tsiolkas bombards readers with representations of the male and, in Dead Europe particularly, with the figure of the young boy. Nine pages of the novel are devoted to a depiction of the young Isaac who, from the ages of 13 to 16 has two ‘affairs’ with much older men. This paper analyses this brief section critically in the light of the older Isaac’s continued fascination with young boys. In The Slap the awkward 18-year-old Richie is linked with both the four-year-old Hugo and the 43-year-old Hector. Through a consideration of Germaine Greer’s The Boy, Emmanuel Lévinas’ notions of infinity and the Face of the Other and Christos Tsiolkas’ essay on tolerance in Tsiolkas, Haigh and Wright’s Tolerance, Prejudice and Fear, this exploratory essay will question the representation of the boy in Tsiolkas’ two novels. It will argue that Tsiolkas, by his own definition a “radical artist”, is fascinated by the ethical and that both novels are examinations of the ethical in the abject. What is the radical ethics implicit in these two novels?' (Author's abstract)

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Last amended 3 Dec 2013 13:36:20
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