Pastiche in T. H. White’s The Once and Future King: The Liberty of Reprise

Radhia Flah Gaiech


The present paper stands as one way of approaching postmodernist fiction in its exploration of the spirit of liberty informing the literary productions that flourished since the 1960s. It focuses on T. H. White’s Arthurian novel, The Once and Future King (1958) as representative of such a sensibility. Pastiche – the novel’s dominant narrative mode – constitutes the main axis for the investigation of the scope of liberty it has bestowed on the writer. The paper is structured around three major sections. In the first, it provides an understanding of the notion of “reprise” and its significance for the practice of pastiche in the novel. Then, it foregrounds the Arthurian legend’s main features being responsible for the development of a climate of freedom; facts which have contributed to the writer’s particular use of pastiche as a mode of expression in his novel. Finally, the paper aims to emphasize White’s achievements through his reprise of the works of his predecessors.



Pastiche; Postmodernism; Reprise; Music; Liberty; Arthurian; Borrowing; Rewriting; Fluidity

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