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Comparative Literature

University of Montana

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Satirical Perspectives: A Cross-Cultural Comparison, Mariah Johnson Jan 2017

Satirical Perspectives: A Cross-Cultural Comparison, Mariah Johnson

Undergraduate Theses and Professional Papers

This paper proposes a cross-cultural examination of the societal satire of the countries of America and Soviet Russia by way of comparison of two satiric novels. Sinclair Lewis’s Babbitt satirizes the business values of capitalist America and the materialism perceived in an economic system based on the mass production and mass consumption of goods. Yurii Olesha’s Envy uses Babbitt in intertextual conversation to perform a similar critique of the Soviet Russian society and values of the same time period. Satiric theory provides a framework for understanding and relaying how each novel performs its parody of the respective society ...