Identifier

etd-04102008-154852

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

English

Document Type

Dissertation

Abstract

Focusing on historical accounts (1684-1734) by English, French, and Spanish witnesses, this dissertation establishes a continuity in fictionalized representations of anti-heroic pirates from the buccaneering period to the Golden Age of Piracy. Informed by history, literary, myth, and performance theory, the analysis identifies significant distortions in reports by observers and participants. The distortions that pertain to mythmaking patterns are classified and analyzed further. Conflicting and ambivalent representations of the pirate as an anti-hero are resolved through the positing of a literary scapegoat hypothesis drawing from René Girard and Joseph Roach. While demonstrating mythical archetypes at work in the construction of the colonial pirate figure, the analysis also takes into account the effects of confluent early modern processes such as the rise of colonial capitalism, print culture, and the middle class in Britain.

Date

2008

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Sandiford, Keith

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