The Role of Portrait in Disclosure of the Personal Crisis in the Novel by Louis-Ferdinand Céline “North”

Nataliia Shaparieva


The purpose of this article is the research of the particularities and functions of portraiture in representing the psychological world of the heroes during the Second World War. So long as the creation of the hero image and representing of his inner world is the main mission of the writer, L.-F. Céline resorts to the description of appearance that reflects the psychological characteristics. In the Céline’s novel prevails the static element of portrait because natural and social features behold the paramount sense in creating the image system of the novel. By means of portraits the author transmits human suffering, draws the contrast between the outward form and the inner value of the heroes, underlines the social inequality. L.-F. Céline debunks as well the myth of the modern beauty that depreciates classic criteria. As a result the writer expresses his decadent attitude due to the moral and spiritual crisis of the society, because the heroes’ portraits mainly reveal aggression and groom. The artistic functions of the portrait are aimed at reflecting the world and men ugliness in the difficult socio-historical conditions of the Second World War times. The value of the article dedicated to L.-F. Céline consists in his considerable impact on the world literature of the XX century.


L.-F. Céline; portrait; image; static element; idea of war


Halych Oleksandr, Nazarets′ Vitalii, Vasyl′iev Ievhen. Teoriia literatury [Theory of literature]. Kyïv, 2008, 488 p. (in Ukrainian).

Elagina O. E. O kontsepte garderoba v proizvedeniiakh G. Ivanova [About the concept of clothes in the works of G. Ivanova]. Vestnik Moskovskogo universiteta, 2009, no. 4, pp. 162–172. (in Russian).

Rabelais F. Gargantiua i Pantagriuel' [Gargantua and Pantagruel]. Moscow, 1991, 768 p. (in Russian).

Céline L.‑F. Nord. Paris, 1960, 636 p.

Godard Henri. Poétique de Céline. Paris, 1985, 476 p.

Lalanne Pierre. L’ombre de Louis-Ferdinand Céline. Réflexions, commentaires et critiques sur l’écriture, la vie et l’esprit de de Louis‑Ferdinand Céline, 2011. Available at: (accessed 1 October 2012).

Sollers Ph. Céline. Paris, 2009, 120 p.

GOST Style Citations

Галич О. Теорія літератури : підручник / Олександр Галич, Віталій Назарець, Євген Васильєв. – К. : Либідь, 2008. – 488 с.


Елагина О. Е. О концепте гардероба в произведениях Г. Иванова / О.Е. Елагина // Вестник Московского университета. Сер. 9. Филология. – 2009. – № 4. – С. 162–172.


Рабле Ф. Гаргантюа и Пантагрюэль / Ф. Рабле. – М. : Правда, 1991. – 768 с.


Céline L.‑F. Nord / Louis‑Ferdinand Céline. – Paris : Editions Gallimard, 1960. – 636 p.


Godard Henri. Poétique de Céline / Henri Godard. – Paris : Editions Gallimard, 1985. – 476 p.


Lalanne Pierre. L’ombre de Louis‑Ferdinand Céline. Réflexions, commentaires et critiques sur l’écriture, la vie et l’esprit de de Louis‑Ferdinand Céline [Ressource électronique] / Pierre Lalanne. – 2011. – Disponible à :


Sollers Ph. Céline / Philippe Sollers. – Paris : Ecriture, 2009. – 120 p.

Copyright (c) 2013

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

The journal publishes research papers on terms: Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License 


Pytannia literaturoznavstva
ISSN 2306-2908 
Yuriy Fedkovych Chernivtsi National University
2 Kotsiubynsky str., Chernivtsi 58012, Ukraine