American Postmodernist Fiction and the Past - download pdf or read online

By Theophilus Savvas (auth.)

ISBN-10: 0230307787

ISBN-13: 9780230307780

ISBN-10: 1349334502

ISBN-13: 9781349334506

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The best way of so doing, Coover suggests, is by consolidating and regenerating the most potent source of that power – the monologic American myth. By invoking this myth the execution, I would suggest, becomes allegorical; in demonstrating its power to quash these two Communists, the American State allegorically hints that it can and will defeat Communism writ large. 36 While there is much reason to this claim, we might, I think, do well to bear in mind that the words ‘myth’ and ‘history’ are not necessarily as denotative of contradictories as Ramage’s formulation perhaps implies.

Indeed by your betrayal you undoubtedly have altered ‘Nothing but words’ 25 The course of history to the disadvantage of our country! (italics and form in original, Public Burning 25). Coover shows here that the relationship between the synchronic and the diachronic is actually one of symbiosis, each feeds off of the other, serving to exacerbate and perpetuate images such as the one presented here of the Rosenbergs disturbing the natural order of America, and by extension, the world. Indeed, this sense of the natural order of the world is actually rooted in the myth of history as progress, a view vigorously promoted by American elites since the middle of the nineteenth-century.

Indeed, we may perhaps suggest that in an interesting parallel, Nixon himself was victim of his own mythical stereotype – his preWatergate moniker, ‘Tricky Dick’ – which for many established his guilt in the later scandal before it was actually proved. In fact, Coover had a remarkably acute, one is tempted to claim prophetic, understanding of the way in which the Watergate affair itself was functioning in the American psyche. Some writers now consider that although guilty of the charges, Nixon himself was a kind of scapegoat, a sacrifice offered up to the American people by those within the American centre.

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American Postmodernist Fiction and the Past by Theophilus Savvas (auth.)

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