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The Cambridge Companion to American Fiction after 1945


Part of Cambridge Companions to Literature

John N. Duvall, Amy Elias, Robert Rebein, Stacey Olster, Philip Wegner, Susan Lohafer, Keith Byerman, Nancy J. Peterson, A. Robert Lee, Victoria Aarons, Jane Elliot, Martyn Bone, Alan Nadel, Nicole Waligora-Davis, Jay Watson, Brian Jarvis, Linden Peach, Laura Barrett, Jessica Pressman
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  • Date Published: December 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521123471

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About the Authors
  • Each generation revises literary history and this is nowhere more evident than in the post-Second World War period. This 2011 Companion offers a comprehensive, authoritative and accessible overview of the diversity of American fiction since the Second World War. Essays by nineteen distinguished scholars provide critical insights into the significant genres, historical contexts, cultural diversity and major authors during a period of enormous American global political and cultural power. This power is overshadowed, nevertheless, by national anxieties growing out of events ranging from the Civil Rights Movement to the rise of feminism; from the Cold War and its fear of Communism and nuclear warfare to the Age of Terror and its different yet related fears of the 'Other'. American fiction since 1945 has faithfully chronicled these anxieties. An essential reference guide, this Companion provides a chronology of the period, as well as guides to further reading.

    • Shows that the postwar period is more than just a time of postmodern experimentation in fiction
    • Sets the fiction of the period within its cultural and historical context
    • Highlights the major American authors of the period, including Ralph Ellison, Thomas Pynchon and Don DeLillo
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This selection of essays maintains the high standard of content and presentation of other companions in this series. It provides an up-to-date survey of the field in an approachable and manageably-sized volume, and as such would be an important addition [to] university libraries serving American studies, literature or similar departments, as well as public libraries.' Linda Kemp, Reference Reviews

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    Product details

    • Date Published: December 2011
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521123471
    • length: 292 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 2 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction: a story of the stories of American fiction after 1945 John N. Duvall
    Part I. Poetics and Genres:
    1. Postmodern metafiction Amy Elias
    2. Contemporary realism Robert Rebein
    3. New journalism and the non-fiction novel Stacey Olster
    4. Science fiction Philip Wegner
    5. The short story Susan Lohafer
    Part II. Historical and Cultural Contexts:
    6. African American fiction Keith Byerman
    7. American Indian fiction Nancy J. Peterson
    8. Multiethnicities: Latino/a and Asian American fiction A. Robert Lee
    9. American Jewish fiction Victoria Aarons
    10. Feminist fiction Jane Elliot
    11. Southern fiction Martyn Bone
    12. Fiction and the Cold War Alan Nadel
    13. Fiction and 9/11 John N. Duvall
    Part III. Major Authors:
    14. Ralph Ellison Nicole Waligora-Davis
    15. Flannery O'Connor Jay Watson
    16. Thomas Pynchon Brian Jarvis
    17. Toni Morrison Linden Peach
    18. Don DeLillo Laura Barrett
    Conclusion: whither American fiction? Jessica Pressman

  • Instructors have used or reviewed this title for the following courses

    • American Fiction after World War ll
    • American Literature V
    • Contemporary American Literature
    • Contemporary Literary Expressions
  • Editor

    John N. Duvall, Purdue University, Indiana
    John N. Duvall is the Margaret Church Distinguished Professor of English at Purdue University. He has published nine previous books on modernist and contemporary American fiction, most recently Race and White Identity in Southern Fiction (2008), The Cambridge Companion to Don DeLillo (2008) and Faulkner and his Critics (2010).


    John N. Duvall, Amy Elias, Robert Rebein, Stacey Olster, Philip Wegner, Susan Lohafer, Keith Byerman, Nancy J. Peterson, A. Robert Lee, Victoria Aarons, Jane Elliot, Martyn Bone, Alan Nadel, Nicole Waligora-Davis, Jay Watson, Brian Jarvis, Linden Peach, Laura Barrett, Jessica Pressman

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