Download Don Delillo: The Possibility of Fiction (Routledge by Peter Boxall PDF

By Peter Boxall

One of the few to be had books of feedback at the subject, this monograph offers the fullest account to this point of Don DeLillo's writing, situating his oeuvre inside a much broader research of the situation of latest fiction, and working along with his complete paintings in terms of modern political and financial issues for the fist time.

Providing a lucid and nuanced interpreting of DeLillo's ambivalent engagement with American and ecu tradition, in addition to with modernism and postmodernism, and globalization and terrorism, this interesting quantity interrogates the severe and aesthetic capacities of fiction in what's an age of worldwide capitalism and US cultural imperialism.

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Extra info for Don Delillo: The Possibility of Fiction (Routledge Transnational Perspectives on American Literature)

Sample text

As Marcel remakes his world, as art, from the chance possibilities offered by involuntary memory, and Joyce’s Dedalus uses the alchemy of modernist poetics to forge ‘out of the sluggish matter of the earth a new soaring impalpable imperishable being’,10 so David seeks to build, from the potential that lies in the empty shoe, a Americana 33 new America; an America in which aura is preserved and maintained, in which the trembling possibility that David divines in his adolescent kitchen is finally born, like Yeats’ rough beast,11 and returned to a new American Bethlehem at the very centre of things.

His parents’ neighbours line up to welcome him into their exhausted community, to reveal to him its tawdry mysteries. The ‘Collier woman’, to whom a distant scandal is attached, informs him archly that ‘you have a man’s body and a man’s appetite’ (A 191), and the local frustrated novelist, Harold Torgeson, confides in him that ‘I killed three Japanese in the war that I know of. I’m telling you these things because they’ll be useful to you someday’ (A 194). At the end of the party, as David stands on the threshold of adult, post-war, small-town America, he catches a glimpse of his mother, through the kitchen doorway: Americana 29 My mother was in there.

Meanwhile, David Bell the elder sits in the calm of a tropical island, wearing ‘white flannel trousers’ (A 348), watching the film in which his younger self records his Joycean journey westwards, and writing the appealingly clean and bulky manuscript in which the younger David’s frantic struggles are narrated. Where Great Expectations is structured around the eventual ethical and aesthetic convergence of narrator and character, however, DeLillo’s novel is more violently maimed by a hostile separation between the two, which the narrative is unable or unwilling to close.

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