Bio: Bernard Duyfhuizen is an academic researcher from University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire. The author has contributed to research in topics: Narrative & Reading (process). The author has an hindex of 2, co-authored 2 publications receiving 18 citations.
22 Sep 2002
TL;DR: Time is always an issue in narrative literature as mentioned in this paper, but it is rarely, if ever, reported to the reader in a purely linear chronological fashion; likewise, it is often reported without gaps or without moments of "disnarration," to use Gerald Prince's term, that engage the reader's writerly dimension.
Abstract: Time is always an issue in narrative literature The conventional story, composed of character actions within a causal logic, always covers a represented expanse of time That represented expanse of time, however, is rarely, if ever, reported to the reader in a purely linear chronological fashion; likewise, it is rarely, if ever, reported without gaps or without moments of "disnarration," to use Gerald Prince's term, that engage the reader in narrative's writerly dimension Time in the discourse is concerned with more than reported time; the time of the telling also influences the reader's experience of time in fictional texts Moreover, the intersection of factual history with/in fictional narrative adds further dimensions of telling time to the reader's experience of the text Modernist and postmodernist narrative dynamics as well as reader-response, poststructuralist and new-historicist theories for reading narrative have schooled the contemporary reader to suspend belief rather than disbelief and to question the multi-functional nature of time in narrative fiction–even to the point of discovering time traps within the text
22 Sep 1994
TL;DR: A reader trap is a narrative information that either produces a moment of interpretive doubt for which there is no certain solution, or produces a false sense of certainty about events in the narrative universe as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: Near the end of the seance held at Peter Sachsa's, in Part 1 of Gravity's Rainbow, the voice of Walter Rathenau poses a set of problems to his listeners: "'You must ask two questions. First, what is the real nature of synthesis? And then: what is the real nature of control?'" (167). This is, of course, one of those typical Pynchon passages that invite members of the critical cartel, the Pyndustry, to seize on them as keystones for critical reading. Paradoxically, this one is also particularly good for exploring a narrative effect I have called the reader trap. Reader traps are stylistic and thematic techniques that unsettle the readerly desire to construct an ordered cosmos within the fictional space of the text. Specifically, a reader trap is narrative information that either produces a moment of interpretive doubt for which there is no certain solution, or produces a false sense of certainty about events in the narrative universe. I have written elsewhere about how reader traps function in our reading of Tyrone Slothrop's map and of Bianca's characterization and textual disappearance. In these earlier cases, I was drawn to the problem of the reader trap by a sense that readers had often been too hasty in assigning definitive meanings to Slothrop's map and to Bianca. My focus in this essay is Walter Rathenau, the putative father of the cartel, the "They-system" that is clearly among the villains of the text; but in that role Rathenau also signifies a reader trap.
TL;DR: The authors analyzes Bleeding Edge for its pervasive representation of money, arguing that it operates as a metareality in the novel both on the levels of plot and style. But money does exhibit a tendency towards moral corruption and their loss, but at the same time it eludes any complete control and remains an economic as well as symbolic tool that can undermine the very capitalist system it seems to perpetuate.
Abstract: The essay analyzes Bleeding Edg e for its pervasive representation of money, arguing that it operates as a metareality in the novel both on the levels of plot and style. Money is presented as a symbolic structure behind reality that is accessible to the initiated, the interpretation of which offers genuine insight about the world and its interrelations, in parallel to religious or scientific discourses. This does not simply mean that everything—politics, society, culture, technology, etc.—is ultimately determined by economic factors, but rather that money underlies the reality of these phenomena like a kind of source code, and that it is readable as such, for better or worse. In the novel, real and virtual money is heavily associated with moral values and their loss, although it is not at all only associated negatively with greed and the abuse of power. Money also harbors subversive potential in Bleeding Edge , as it can uncover corruption and fraud as much as other conspiratorial phenomena (especially in connection to 9/11). In particular, cash money can become an alternative medium of communication that combines the private and the public. Money does exhibit a tendency towards moral corruption in the novel, but at the same time it eludes any complete control and remains an economic as well as symbolic tool that can undermine the very capitalist system it seems to perpetuate.
TL;DR: This paper presented the results produced by the application of three corpus analysis tools to Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow: word frequency/keyness analysis, social network analysis, and topic modeling.
Abstract: This essay presents the results produced by the application of three corpus analysis tools to Thomas Pynchon’s Gravity’s Rainbow: word frequency/keyness analysis, social network analysis, and topic modeling. It uses these data to argue that the novel is peculiarly concerned with the concept of the present moment. Engaging along the way traditional arguments about the nature of the book’s Romanticism and its sense of “connectedness,” the essay demonstrates how distant reading can aid us in perceiving aspects of overwhelming texts that are not easy to perceive otherwise, consequently complementing rather than opposing close reading practices.
09 May 2019
TL;DR: Pynchon's 1984 essay "Is It O.K. to Be a Luddite?" is, on the face of it, a confident declaration of human exceptionalism.
Abstract: Pynchon’s 1984 essay “Is It O.K. to Be a Luddite?” is, on the face of it, a confident declaration of human exceptionalism. Published in the same year as Donna Haraway’s “A Cyborg Manifesto,” which rejects the rigid boundaries between technology, nature, and the human, the essay lingers on “the love/hate that grows up between humans and machinery.” Luddite rage against the machine, for Pynchon, testifies to an “abiding human hunger” for meaning that the modern disenchantment with nature forces us to wrestle from “amplified, multiplied, more than human opponents.” Only near its end does the essay anticipate the posthuman erosion of the borders between technology and human life: if the insistence on the miraculous used to be a placeholder for the human that “den[ies] to the machine at least some of its claims on us,” in the coming computer age our machines may themselves become operators of the miraculous, as it seems “the deepest Luddite hope of miracle has now come to reside in the computer’s ability to get the right data to those whom the data will do the most good.” It is here, Pynchon writes, that Luddites finally come to share common ground with a “cheerful army of technocrats.” If this seems to spell an end to Luddite resistance, Pynchon’s use of the term “army” – followed by a reference to “a permanent power establishment of admirals, generals and corporate CEO’s” – points to a residual violence besetting the coming entanglement of human life, nature, and technology. That entanglement has in the meantime received a name. In 2000 the Dutch atmospheric chemist Paul Crutzen adopted ecologist Eugene F. Stoermer’s term “the Anthropocene” to name human life’s irreversible impact on the chemical and climatological makeup of the planet. With the help of its technological and fossil-fuel–driven prostheses, human life has become a geological agent that warrants recognition as a geochronological unit in its own right. Although the Anthropocene Working Group’s 2016