John Barth (Routledge Revivals)
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John Barth represents most completely what has been termed postmodernism, not because his work comprises more postmodernist features than other contemporary writers but because, for Barth, "life" and "art" are two sides of the same coin. In this brief study, first published in 1987, Heide Ziegler examines all Barth's novels. She argues that each pair of novels first "exhausts" and then "replenishes" those literary genres that hinge on a particular world view: the existentialist novel, the Bildungsroman, the Kunstlerroman, or the realistic novel. Through the division of labour between character and author Barth manages to develop a new mode of literary parody which projects itself beyond the mocked literary model and even self-parody into the realm of future fiction. This book is ideal for students of literature and postmodern studies.
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