An Effort for a Psychic Reading of Absurd

Ornela Domi


“Odin Mondvalsen”, a novelette by Kasem Trebeshina narrates the story and profile of a character that on a first glance appears to be a neurotic going through a diagnosis assignment process. The character manifests double personality and he is ambiguous from a psychological viewpoint. The name Odin Mondvalsen, his clinical diagnosis, the psychiatric hospital shall be seen as a consequence, an outcome of the efforts of a “political laboratory” for manipulation of the individual, where systematic rules have been infringed and the defendant, self-named Odin Mondvalsen, appears before trial and is declared by the court to be mentally ill. The discourse, deviating from normal logic of perception of things produces absurd. In this respect there is the contribution of the neurotic state, as a psychological state of mind. Consequently, the order of things is disrupted and the artistic play comes to the foreground. The arrests, the accusations, the empirical experience of the author with hospitals, psychiatric commissions have, in my opinion, encouraged him to write “Odin Mondvalsen”. The work is an “opera aperta”, so it has an open plot structure. Surreal time delicately delineates real time, which the readers can perceive gradually as they complete the reading of the storyline and the absent beginning of the story is composed in the same way. The novelette belongs to the surrealist type, under the influence of a Cervantean, Don Quixotesque language style with the marked irony and black humor of “the reason of the unreason”. The fictional use of historical characters (which reverses historical facts) aims to create tragicomic effects; their imagined stories are comical and the author consciously gives priority to the delirium producing plays on words. The psychiatry depicted in this novel is a synecdoche, a detail out of the whole, with the whole being socialist realism. (Synecdoche is a figure of speech that Trebeshina widely uses in his work.) The signifiers start to move fluidly in the paradigm, gaining second and third meanings. The metaphors here are contextual metaphors and situations are connected with one – another through the principle of analogy. The metaphors create absurd and phantasmagorical situations which in turn provide arguments and substantiate the modern style of surrealism through the irony, stigmatization, mockery, especially in the dialogues with the slender doctor and the two gentlemen from the Ministry. Seeing it from Lacan‟s viewpoint, according to which the truth is manifested in the relationship of the individual with the objects of his desire, in Kasem Trebeshina‟s “Odin Mondvalsen”, the desired object is freedom (implied key word), love, and life, the freedom to write freely, without hindrances or defined schemes.

Keywords: neurotic state, double personality, delirium, deviation of logic and discourse, scheme, Don Quixotesque, drama, fantasy, metonymy, short stories, signifier, paradigm, unconscious speech, desire, freedom, writing freely.

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