Adaptation and integration: Environmental unconscious in the by Elise Ann Martucci PDF

By Elise Ann Martucci

This dissertation demonstrates how Don DeLillo's fiction provides a synthesis of purchaser tradition and traditional panorama as a key to his relevant subject of human survival within the postmodern global. via shut readings of DeLillo's novels and discussions of postmodernist and ecocritical theories, this venture deals an important addition to present feedback on DeLillo, postmodernist fiction, and environmental feedback. whereas a lot of the feedback on DeLillo has excited by his dating to American pop culture, together with the modern media setting, there's no entire dialogue of the environmental matters that pervade his texts. My dissertation bargains this type of accomplished dialogue whereas additionally proposing DeLillo's place inside of conventional American literary works.

In order to ascertain DeLillo's presentation of our environment, I concentrate on the illustration of kids and the presentation of language and artwork in 4 of his novels: Americana, The Names, White Noise and Underworld . In those novels DeLillo's characters convey a frequently repressed understanding of the flora and fauna underlying their image-dominated atmosphere. it's this know-how and the next wish to hook up with their fabric international that illuminates the environmental effects and demanding situations the stipulations of our postindustrial society. those specific novels additionally exhibit how environmental issues have built all through DeLillo's physique of labor. within the previous novels, DeLillo's environmental place is implicitly conveyed via his characters' responses to and perceptions of the panorama. His later novels, specifically White Noise and Underworld , current particular environmental crises as facts of the consequences of the media-saturated tradition that he examines. via my research of DeLillo's fiction i don't argue that DeLillo is anti-technology or perhaps really hostile to consumerism, yet I do suggest that his novels deliver to mild the environmental implications of consumerism and know-how, and they increase questions about how we will adapt to and live on during this setting.

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Additional info for Adaptation and integration: Environmental unconscious in the works of Don DeLillo

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In the novels I discuss here, I will demonstrate how characters such as David Bell, James Axton, Jack Gladney and Nick Shay attempt to distance themselves from the material world in order to avoid painful memories, complex personal relationships or death itself. In each case the characters devise methods of relinquishing themselves into images and myths of America that subvert the reality of the world immediately surrounding them. Place and the Environmental Unconscious All is not hopeless in DeLillo, for he brings his readers, and at least some of his characters, back to a recognition of the significance of place.

Waste (nuclear waste, human waste, garbage) is a presence in many of his novels, and DeLillo does not explicitly offer a solution to what we will do with the garbage we cannot aesthetically recycle, nor does he specifically explain how we can save our environment. For this neglect, he may be dismissed by ecocritics. However, as Buell concedes, by making garbage and toxicity into metaphor DeLillo is bringing the problem into our consciousness (52). Furthermore, DeLillo’s illumination of the ways in which artists integrate the waste products of consumerism into the American landscapes in order to create art prompts a reconsideration of what defines waste while still exposing the damage our consumer culture has done to our environment, both human and non­ human.

The way in which his R eproduced with perm ission of the copyright owner. Further reproduction prohibited without permission. 37 characters understand themselves is often revealed through their relationships to the particular places they come from or they reside. Place is often an underlying influence on characters’ behavior and knowledge. By demonstrating the subtle influence of place on perceptions and attitudes, DeLillo invokes the positive elements of the “environmental unconscious” that Buell describes: “a residual capacity (of individual humans, authors, texts, readers, communities) to awake to fuller apprehension of physical environment and one’s interdependence with it” (22).

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Adaptation and integration: Environmental unconscious in the works of Don DeLillo by Elise Ann Martucci


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