The Treatment and Function of Latent Homosexuality in André Gide's L'Immoraliste and Thomas Mann's Der Tod in Venedig
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This thesis discusses the theme of homosexuality presented in The Immoralist (1902) by André Gide and in Death in Venice (1912) by Thomas Mann. Evidence of homosexuality in the texts is substantiated in detail and the way in which the theme is approached, including how it fits into the structure of the narratives, is also examined. Given that these texts are quite complex, the resounding message of this theme can only be assessed through consideration of the novellas as whole works of art. Thus, the other major themes from each text are reviewed prior to reaching conclusions about the ‘intended’ message behind each work. This thesis proposes that The Immoralist centres on the search for the authentic self, while Death in Venice concerns the downfall of the artist from the height of dignity and fame. The role of homosexuality as a theme is gauged as it relates to these interpretations.