English 90

Practices of Literary Study: Murderers, Madmen and Dissolutes: Cormac McCarthy and His Progeny

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
1 Fall 2022 Danner, Mark
TuTh 12:30-2 Wheeler 300

The heroes of Cormac McCarthy's novels occupy the borderlands of the American imagination and court its darkest urges. He is a writer fascinated by violence and the sacred, by loneliness and worship, by the American jeremiad and the scream in the forest. The haunting rhythms of his prose echo Melville and Faulkner and the King James Version but the anguish of his protagonists in their battered landscapes evoke Dostoevsky and Kafka and Beckett. This fall the 88-year-old master will publish not one but two new novels. In this seminar we will read those new works and endeavor to set them against his large body of writing -- novels as well as films -- in an attempt to come to grips with McCarthy's six-decade foray into the furthest reaches of the American Gothic.

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