Simulated National Identity and Ascendant Hyperreality in Julian Barnes’s England, England

Hassan Abootalebi H., Niazi N.


The paper sets out to analyze Julian Barnes’s novel England, England (1998) in the light of Jean Baudrillard’s concepts of simulation and hyperreality. According to Baudrillard, what we experience in today’s world is a simulation of reality superseded by signs and images, and therefore we are living in a hyperreal world. Barnes’s book offers a representative sample of hyperreal world in which Martha, the protagonist, finds herself troubled. Although initially she is impressed by the glamour of the theme park named England, England later on she loses interest in it when she comes to realization that everything about it is fake. This condition, making her think of her own identity and true self, finally leads her to leave the theme park and settle in the village of Anglia where she hopes to discover her true nature and regain her lost happiness.


Barnes; England; Baudrillard; simulation; hyperreality

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