“Siblings to the empty spaces in the heart”: Space, Place and Landscape in Jim Crace’s Quarantine


Jim Crace’s writing is notable for its poetic, rhythmical style and idiosyncratic rendering of place and space. In terms of the latter. Crace labels himself a “landscape writer” as all his novels feature distinct environments that are both familiar and other, realistic and uncanny, which has led the critics to coin for them the term “Craceland.” Qurantine (1997) retells the story of Jesus Christ’s forty-day sojourn in the wilderness from the perspective of a contemporary agnostic or atheist. The crucial part of its story is set in a hilly scrubland in the Judean desert, and this heterogeneous and peripheral place and its landscape prove to be determining for the action and character development. Using geocriticism and Michel Foucault’s concept of heterotopia as its theoretical points of departure, this paper attempts to analyse the novel’s spatial representations and demonstrates the various roles space, place and landscape assume within the narrative’s formal and meaningful frameworks.

Author Biography

Petr Chalupský, Charles University, Prague
Petr Chalupský is Associate Professor at the Department of English Language and Literature, Faculty of Education, Charles University, where he teaches courses in English Literature, Literary Studies and Literary Theory. His research and publication activities focus on contemporary British fiction. He is the author of the monograph A Horror and a Beauty: The World of Peter Ackroyd’s London Novels (2016).


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Funding data

  • Grant numbers 20-24867S