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Vanishing Points: or, the Timescapes of the Contemporary American Novel
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Languages, Department of English.
2016 (English)In: Studia Neophilologica, ISSN 0039-3274, E-ISSN 1651-2308, Vol. 88, 57-67 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This essay offers a critical analysis of the concern with large temporal scales in the contemporary American novel. I argue it has resituated human life within a vast temporal landscape - what I refer to as a timescape - that at its extremes relates the human to the nonhuman, and gives form to the possibility of species extinction. The temporal vastness of the contemporary American novel should be read as catastrophic; it even implicates the present in the slowly unfolding crises it seeks to capture. At the same time, this fiction, as I argue through readings of Don DeLillo's Point omega (2010) and Nathaniel Rich's Odds against tomorrow (2013), multiplies temporal scales, some larger and others smaller. It is through the imbrication of differently sized scales and timescapes that these novels articulate their central concern: how the present relates to the future.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 88, 57-67 p.
Keyword [en]
Catastrophe; Contemporary; Scale; American novel; Time
National Category
Specific Literatures
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-271516DOI: 10.1080/00393274.2015.1096042ISI: 000372036500006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-271516DiVA: diva2:892081
Available from: 2016-01-08 Created: 2016-01-08 Last updated: 2016-04-19Bibliographically approved

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