Judie Newman's Utopia and Terror in Contemporary AmericanFiction offers an illuminating analysis of the ways in which twenty-first-century U.S. writing has begun to turn its back on what Kathryn Hume has called the "Aggressive Fictions" by prominent postmodern writers in the final decades of the twentieth century: texts designed to "repel" their readers by the likes of William Burroughs, Philip Roth, Katherine Dunn, and Bret Easton Ellis that Hume identifies in various ways with "the politics of political (...) despair". In contrast, Newman traces a more recent trend toward emotional immersion, or a focus on narratives that actively draw the reader in. In this way, her book complements work on the topics of... (shrink)
An exploration of the influence of Scottish Common Sense Philosophy on early nineteenth century American attitudes toward fiction and the imagination. Martin first shows the great appeal of this movement, which became a semi-official philosophy in America. He suggests that it was attractive to Americans because "it stabilized, it was safe, it discouraged undue speculation." In reaction to this stolid philosophic outlook emerged a quest for a free, more dynamic concept of the imagination.--G. E. S.
In Alice Walker’s vignette “The Flowers,” a young black girl’s walk in the woods is interrupted when she treads “smack” into the skull of a lynched man. As her name predicates, Myop’s age and innocence obstruct her from seeing deeply into the full implications of the scene, while the more worldly reader is jarred and confronted with a whole history of racial violence and slavery. The skeleton, its teeth cracked and broken, is a temporal irruption, a Gothic “smack” that shatters (...) the transience of the pastoral scene with the intrusion of a deeper past from which dead matter/material de-composes the story’s present with the violent matter/issue of racism. Walker’s story is representative of an important trope in fiction, where the pastoral dead speak through the details of their remains, and the temporal fabric of text is disrupted by the very substance of death. Against the backdrops of Terry Gifford’s post-pastoral and Fred Botting’s Gothic understanding of the literary corpse as “negative[ly] sublime,” this essay explores the fictional dead as matter unfettered by genre, consistently signifying beyond their own inanimate silences, revealing suppressed and unpalatable themes of racial and sexual violence, child abuse and cannibalistic consumerism. Along with Walker’s story, this study considers these ideas through new readings of Stephen King’s novella The Body, Raymond Carver’s story “So Much Water So Close to Home,” and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. While these writers may form an unlikely grouping in terms of style, each uses pastoral remains as significant material, deploying the dead as Gothic entities that force the reader to confront America’s darkest social and historical matters. (shrink)
En el apartado Noche 3 de Umbral, Juan Emar se vale de la estrategia de la hibridez genérica al construir una novela-drama que resignifica aportes de la vanguardia metaficcional. Nuestra hipótesis es que mediante la “refuncionalización paródica” (Hutcheon) de la diferencia conceptual entre historia y ficción se despliega una poética vanguardista que acoge el simultaneísmo temporal y espacial. Se trabaja con el enfoque postestructuralista foucaultiano que distingue entre una Historia Global, el metarrelato moderno y una Historia General; la que estudia (...) las discontinuidades en las series temporales. En efecto, la poética de la simultaneidad es en la narrativa emariana un mecanismo dislocador de una serie de oposiciones binarias de la episteme moderna: obra dramática v/s representación teatral, espacio escénico v/s sala de espectadores, autor v/s obra, pasado v/s futuro, arte v/s vida, entre otros. Emar despliega así en forma magistral una propuesta vanguardista que da cuenta de la heterogeneidad de tradiciones culturales como impronta de escritura de un sujeto latinoamericano. In paragraph Night 3 of his novella Umbral, Juan Emar utilices hybridism as a generic strategy in the construction of a novella-drama that assign new meanings to the contributions of the metafictional Avant Garde. Our hipothesis is that throught a “parodic refunctionalization” of the distinction between history and fiction is conveying an Avant Garde poetics that promote the spatial and temporal simultaneity. We work with the foucaultian postestructuralism focus which make a distinction between Global History; the modern metanarrative and a General History; that studies the discontinuities in temporals series. The simultaneity poetic’s is in their narrative a mechanism that dislodges a series of binary oppositions as: dramatic work vs. theatrical representation, scenic space vs auditorium, author vs. work, past vs. future, art vs. life, among others. Emar deploys in a masterly way, his Avant Garde proposal of the heterogeneity of cultural traditions as writing impronta of a Latin-American subject. (shrink)
This paper argues that American television fiction with supernatural themes offers Danish teenage audiences a playground for exploring different religious imaginations in a continuous process of internal negotiations; thereby transforming their imaginations. This process of the mediatization of religion is strengthened by three dominating factors: the absence of a homogenous religious worldview in Danish culture, the importance of high production values and visual credibility to supernatural concepts in these shows, and the appeal of transformed religious content in open-structured (...) serial narratives. This essay presents the findings of an empirical qualitative study of seventy-two Danish teenagers and considers two primary parameters for the case-based reception study: the teenagers' levels of fandom and their connection with institutionalized religion. In other words, how are religious imaginations transformed in relation to viewers' level of commitment to the television fiction and to traditional institutionalized religion? (shrink)
El presente estudio tiene como objetivo describir el diálogo que la narrativa hispanoamericana de vanguardia sostuvo con la figura del accidente durante el siglo XX, a partir de un esquema de análisis que examina la asimilación de este fenómeno sociocultural en el plano del contenido, de la forma y de la recepción literarias. Para ello, establecemos un modelo de lectura basándose en las observaciones planteadas por Macedonio Fernández en su Museo de la Novela de la Eterna , y analizamos desde (...) este marco de referencia la figuración estético-política del accidente en una muestra ilustrativa de relatos. This article describes the dialogue between Latin American vanguard narrative and the figure of the accident during the twentieth century. We propose a model of analysis that examines the assimilation of this socio-cultural phenomenon in terms of literary structure, reception and content. We propose a reading model based on the insightful contributions of Macedonio Fernandez's Museo de la Novela de la Eterna, and analyze the political-aesthetical figuration of the accident in a corpus of exemplary texts. (shrink)