Imperfect Imitations: A Novel
Bound Volume Number
Honors Capstone Project
Date of Submission
Prof. Arthur Flowers
Prof. Sarah Harwell
historical fiction, celebrity, personal identity
Capstone Prize Winner
Won Capstone Funding
“Imperfect Imitations” is a novel based around the process of the ‘resurrection’ of dead historical figures and the effects of their presence on the rest of the world. It deals directly with issues of fame, the relationship between celebrity and personal identity, identity itself, and personal purpose. The main characters all carry the background of having been born with the memories of people who are long dead, immediately being identified as those people, and being expected to accomplish the same things they have, usually by any means necessary and without regard to their own desires.
The story is narrated by the clone of one Dana Fourtier, who took her own life seven years before the story’s start, and was ‘resurrected’ by her older sister, cloning pioneer Tania Fourtier. Fourtier was cloned together with several more famous historical figures, including Oscar Wilde and Anne Frank, with whom she became close before they were separated in order to live lives under the shadow of the fame of their ‘originals’. Unable to re-adjust to life as Dana Fourtier, her clone has secluded herself in her apartment. This continues until her fellow clones decide to break free of the lives that have been laid out for them, and take her along for the ride. But given the power the cloning facility has amassed by its hold on the public attention and on the human beings they have created, not to mention tensions within the group, maintaining their escape proves difficult. Over the course of the novel, Dana must not only deal with her friends and their struggles - she must also confront her own desires, and the original Dana Fourtier’s past.
The novel has twenty-two chapters, plus an interlude and epilogue, and was written in Microsoft Word.
Salmonsen, Mary, "Imperfect Imitations: A Novel" (2015). Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects. 836.
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