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Popular Genres and Interiority

Andrew Hoberek

Pages 567 - 578



This publication is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License Attribution - NonCommercial - NoDerivatives 4.0. (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

This essay argues that twenty-first-century novelists have turned to popular genre models for, among other things, alternatives to twentieth-century literary realism’s dominant concern with characters’ interiority. Beginning with the anticipation of this development in Toni Morrison’s 1987 novel "Beloved" and focusing on two more recent works of fiction—Helen Oyeyemi’s 2009 "White Is for Witching" and James Hannaham’s 2015 "Delicious Foods"—the essay addresses the particular strategy whereby novelists attribute interiority to nonhuman objects in order to explore new strategies for addressing the social and economic concerns that were once central to realist fiction.

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