Download Against the grain : reading Pynchon's counternarratives by Sascha Pohlmann PDF

By Sascha Pohlmann

Against the Grain: examining Pynchon's Counternarratives is the 1st e-book that seriously addresses Thomas Pynchon's novel Against the Day, released in 2006. the 19 essays amassed during this quantity hire a wide number of techniques to this large novel and in addition take it as a chance to reevaluate Pynchon's past works, interpreting Against the Day when it comes to V., The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow, Vineland, Mason & Dixon, and Pynchon's brief tales and essays. The authors-younger in addition to proven students from 11 countries-address those works with reference to problems with modernism and postmodernism, politics, pop culture, options of area and time, visuality, sexuality, id, media and verbal exchange, philosophy, faith, American and worldwide (literary) historical past, physics, arithmetic, economics, and plenty of extra. Their insights are as profound as they're diversified, and all supply clean perspectives on Pynchon's fiction that might be invaluable, attention-grabbing and unique for researchers and fanatics alike

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Extra info for Against the grain : reading Pynchon's counternarratives

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In the fields that will become the “Flanders Fields” of World War I), while most of the novel’s future-trusting protagonists are unaware of the catastrophes we as readers know are still to come. As one of these messengers of future doom reports: We are here among you as seekers of refuge from our present—your future— a time of worldwide famine, exhausted fuel supplies, terminal poverty—the end of capitalistic experiment. Once we came to understand the simple thermodynamic truth that Earth’s resources were limited, in fact soon to run out, the whole capitalist illusion fell to pieces.

Besides being a nearly ideal synthesis of the Two Cultures, science fiction also happens to have been one of the principal refuges, in our time, for those of Luddite persuasion. (40) He also describes genre writing as a ghettoized form of literature, judged not Serious enough and confined to its own part of town. It is not the only neighborhood in the great City of Literature so, let us say, closely defined. In westerns, the good people always win. In romance novels, love conquers all. In whodunits, murder, being a pretext for a logical puzzle, is hardly ever an irrational act.

The lines they form issue from a sequence of events or moments, switch-points, forks in the road (a recurring metaphor in Pynchon), so that turns and alternative directions are always possible, if not always taken. Characters follow (and in a sense are) vectors of the various desires that form their life- and plot-lines, that move (and often shift) them into different directions of space or time, or into different manners of fulfillment—paths that sometimes converge, sometimes cross, and sometimes run parallel with each other: “‘one might imagine a giant railway depot, with thousands of gates disposed radially in all dimensions, leading to tracks of departure to all manner of alternate Histories’” (AtD 682).

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