criado em: 14:08 2023-01-05



White Noise (DeLillo)

P. 319–21

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  • A distinction can be drawn between the piecemeal appropriation of consumer-culture materials and the wholesale repurposing of pop-culture genres within the Avant-Pop field
  • The first phenomenon, piecemeal appropriation, can be seen as a form of consumer realism and is achieved when signifiers of commercial culture are incorporated into "hostile" textual environments and re-contextualized
  • Examples of this include Andy Warhol's replication of brand names and logos, Acker's cut-and-paste fiction, and the "Pictures Generation" artists
  • Conventional-looking texts, such as White Noise, American Psycho, and Kiss of the Spider Woman, also utilize this phenomenon
  • The second phenomenon, wholesale repurposing of pop-culture genres, is global and encompasses entire texts, resulting in postmodern Westerns, science fiction, and historical fiction
  • The French and German New Wave cinema piggybacked on Hollywood B movie genres, and some postmodern texts shift between multiple pop-culture genres
  • The postmodern adaptation and repurposing of the detective story is a typical example of this, with the epistemological quest of the classic detective story being frustrated and betrayed.

The text describes two distinct phenomena within the field of Avant-Pop literature. The first is piecemeal appropriation, in which elements of consumer culture are incorporated into texts and de-contextualized, creating a form of "consumer realism." Examples of this include the work of Andy Warhol and the "Pictures Generation" artists. The second phenomenon is wholesale repurposing, in which entire pop-culture genres are taken over and repurposed within a text, creating hybrids such as postmodern Westerns and science fiction. This is often seen in postmodern literature, particularly in the use of the detective story genre and the genre of metaphysical detective fiction.

P. 445

This text discusses how the loss of connections between past moral scripts and the present is experienced as a postmodern moment of disequilibrium and existential uncertainty. This sense of disequilibrium is illustrated in the novel White Noise by Don DeLillo, in which the protagonist, Jack Gladney, is adrift in a realm without convincing authorities or certainties. He is unable to sustain traditional notions of morality in the face of the postmodern "noise" of media networks, consumer culture, and redefined family structures. He yearns for a fixed perspective but is unable to find one, even as he plans to kill his wife's lover. In the end, he is unable to maintain the narrative of wronged husband seeking revenge, and instead switches moral scripts and saves the man's life.

P. 457–8

The text discusses the concept of the story cycle in postmodern literature. The form is seen as problematic and difficult to define, as it falls somewhere between the unity of the traditional novel and the atomized nature of a short story collection. The term "story cycle" has been used to describe this form, as well as others such as "short story sequence" and "composite novel." The text argues that the story cycle is a key structural concept that differentiates a conflicted second-generation postmodernism from its ancestors, and that many second-generation works such as Franzen’s The Corrections, Wallace’s Infinite Jest, Whitehead’s Sag Harbor, Yamashita’s I Hotel, share similarities with story cycles. The text defines story cycles as having less emphasis on a unifying protagonist than in a traditional novel, and a less continuous sequence of narrative units. Story cycles are also characterized by interstitial divisions, and the relative independence of their narrative units.