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American magic and dread : Don DeLillo's dialogue with culture

Author: Mark Osteen
Publisher: Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, ©2000.
Series: Penn studies in contemporary American fiction.
Edition/Format:   Book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Don DeLillo once remarked to an interviewer that his intention is to use "the whole picture, the whole culture," of America. Since the publication of his first novel Americana in 1971, DeLillo has explored modern American culture through a series of acclaimed novels, including White Noise (1985; winner of the American Book Award), Libra (1988), and Underworld (1997). For Mark Osteen, the most bracing and unsettling  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Named Person: Don DeLillo; Don DeLillo; Don DeLillo; Don DeLillo; Don DeLillo
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Mark Osteen
ISBN: 0812235517 9780812235517
OCLC Number: 43541862
Description: 299 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
Contents: Children of Godard and Coca-Cola: cinema and consumerism in the early fiction --
The nature of diminishing existence --
Boomerang: Ratner's Star through the looking glass --
Observing obsession, questioning the quest --
The theology of secrets --
The American book of the dead: Channeling White Noise --
Becoming incorporated: sepctacular authorship in Mao II --
"Everything is connected": containment and counterhistory in Underworld.
Series Title: Penn studies in contemporary American fiction.
Responsibility: Mark Osteen.

Abstract:

Don DeLillo once remarked to an interviewer that his intention is to use "the whole picture, the whole culture," of America. Since the publication of his first novel Americana in 1971, DeLillo has explored modern American culture through a series of acclaimed novels, including White Noise (1985; winner of the American Book Award), Libra (1988), and Underworld (1997). For Mark Osteen, the most bracing and unsettling feature of DeLillo's work is that, although his fiction may satirize cultural forms, it never does so from a privileged position outside the culture. His work brilliantly mimics the argots of the very phenomena it dissects: violent thrillers and conspiracy theories, pop music, advertising, science fiction, film, and television. As a result, DeLillo has been read both as a denouncer and as a defender of contemporary culture; in fact, Osteen argues, neither description is adequate. DeLillo's dialogue with modern institutions, such as chemical companies, the CIA, and the media, respects their power and ingenuity while criticizing their dangerous consequences. Even as DeLillo borrows from their discourses, he maintains a tenaciously opposing stance toward the sources of collective power. - Publisher.

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