The Transcendence of Masculinity in Thomas Pynchon’s Fiction

Rachid Neji

Abstract


In the reading of Pynchon’s novels, the focus has not been on the study of the artistic peculiarities of the writer as much as it has been on the novelist’s view of the Western male identity, which is the product of historical, political, psychological and stylistic changes that the postmodern masculine selfhood had experienced. The learning of Pynchon’s novels provides an obvious understanding of how this postmodern identity was twisted and deformed on several occasions, at times asserted and at others subverted. This paper deals most explicitly with how the project of analyzing the different aspects of identity fails to pave the way for a conspicuous recognition of the main dilemma. In this sense, Pynchon seems to be incompatible with the classical trend. He satirizes the superiority of masculine identity. In this process, no one can deny that postmodernism is devised to subvert the inculcated values about manhood which were inherited from ancient artistic background. The subversion foreshadows the loss of the assumption that the Western male identity is superior to the female one. Therefore, Pynchon’s deconstruction is meant to give voice to the female selfhood.


Keywords


Identity, Masculinity, Postmodern, Subversion, Assertion and Femininity.

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