Introduction to Literary Context: American Post-Modernist Novels
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The Introduction to Literary Context series provides introductory overviews of some of the world's best-known works of literature, including novels, short stories, novellas, and poems, placing them in historical, societal, scientific and religious context of their time to deepen understanding and encourage discussion.
This volume introduces literary contexts as they apply to American novels written post 1960, by American and Canadian authors, offering high school and undergraduate students a working foundation of literary context designed to prepare them for more critical literary analysis, such as in Critical Insights.
This new series – Introduction to Literary Context -- provides richly detailed essays on significant American post-modernist novels that are studied by upper high school and undergraduate college students. It includes post-modern works by both American and Canadian authors. This volume includes discussion of 36 novels, including: How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent (Julia Alverez); Libra (Don DeLillo); Girl, Interrupted (Susana Kaysan); The Red Tent (Anita Diamant); The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood); Neruomancer (William Gibson); The Naked and the Dead (Norman Mailer); Beloved (Toni Morrison); Zombie (Joyce Carol Oates); Rabbit Run (John Updike); and Jailbird (Kurt Vonnegut). Each essay examines these novels through the following categories: Content Synopsis; Societal Context; Scientific & Technological Context; and Biographical Context. Designed to introduce high school and undergraduate students to these literary concepts, this volume is a valuable forerunner to the more rigorous critical analysis provided in Salem’s Critical Insights series. Indeed, many of the novels, authors, and themes covered in Introduction to Literary Context have a companion Critical Insight volume for continued study.
The essays in Introduction to Literary Context: American Post-Modernist Novels also include a list of Complementary Texts, Discussion Questions, and Essay Questions to help students get the most out of their study of these novels.
agreed to marry him, although this never happened. Back in the present, the hotel is now just a corridor leading to the front desk with a range of seedy rooms upstairs. The desk is run by a man called Israel Edel who gives Starbuck the best room because he has done the strange thing of making a reservation. Starbuck asks him what the restaurant has become and Israel tells him that it is a gay porno theatre. In his room, Starbuck finds that one drawer of his dresser contains incomplete clarinets.
Mary Ellen Snodgrass, Kingsolver “makes use of the lowly bean as a double symbol of humility and of nature’s building blocks” (50). Snodgrass notes that beans and plants in general, become an important teaching and communication tool for Taylor and Turtle. Turtle’s language mainly consists of the names of plants; she is also especially interested in planting activities, which is later explained by Taylor’s realization that she must have seen her mother being buried. In comparing Turtle’s
work, Female Man by Joanna Russ, discussed in the following chapter. Photo: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, LC-USZC4-13519. 085-094_Do_Androids_Dream.indd 94 11/10/13 2:42 PM The Female Man by Joanna Russ A thousand years before Janet’s time, all the men on Whileaway were killed by a plague. The all-female society that evolved in the wake of this event is presented as a utopia: genetic surgery has rid Whileawayans of disease; “induction helmets”
is complete and Tyler sits in Content Synopsis Chuck Palahniuk’s novel “Fight Club” opens with an unnamed narrator telling us about someone called Tyler. It drops us straight into the middle of the narrative and asks us to catch up: ‘Tyler gets me a job as a waiter, after that Tyler’s pushing a gun into my mouth and saying, the fi rst step to eternal life is you have to die’ (11). This is the model for the rest of the book. The unnamed narrator remains
the content of her clothbound book, it is clear she is repeating a prayer. “Zooey” takes place a few days after these events, on a November morning in 1955. This story is about Zooey Glass, Franny’s brother and the second youngest of seven Glass children, but is narrated by Buddy Glass, their older brother. The narrative begins with an “author’s formal 113-120_Franny_and_Zooey.indd 114 introduction” from Buddy: “what I’m about to offer isn’t really a short story at all but a sort of prose home