ENGL 272
American Postmodern Fiction Spring 2015 Division I;
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American fiction took a turn at World War II: the simplest way to name the turn is from modernism to postmodernism. The most obvious mark of postmodern narration is its self-consciousness; postmodern books tend to be about themselves, even when they are most historical or realistic. Already a paradox emerges: why would World War II make narratives more self-reflexive? The first book in the course, and the best for approaching this paradox, is Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. Subsequent books: Nabokov’s Pale Fire, Pynchon’s The Crying of Lot 49, Morrison’s Beloved, DeLillo’s White Noise, Carver’s What We Talk About When We Talk About Love, Johnson’s Jesus’ Son.
The Class: Type: seminar
Limit: 25
Expected: 20
Class#: 3596
Requirements/Evaluation: three papers, 3-4 pp., 4-6 pp., and 6-8 pp; class participation
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
Prerequisites: a 100-level ENGL course, or a score of 5 on the AP English Literature exam, or a score of 6 or 7 on the Higher Level IB English exam
Enrollment Preference: sophomores and first-year students
Distribution Notes: meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under ENGL; meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under AMST
Distributions: Division I;

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