Surface and depth : the quest for legibility in American culture / Michael T. Gilmore.

The idea of a common American culture is in retreat; arguments emphasizing difference have discredited the grand synthetic studies that marginalized groups and perspectives at odds with the master narrative. This work is an attempt to revitalize an interpretive overview.

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Bibliographic Details
Main Author: Gilmore, Michael T.
Format: eBook
Published: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2003.
Online Access:Click for online access
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Table of Contents:
  • Prologue: Freud's night out
  • Three foundational documents and their indelibility
  • Majoritarian and racial tyranny: Tocquevill and Beaumont
  • Popular forms : Cooper and the western ; Poe and the detective story ; Fanny Fern and the celebrity novel
  • The nineteenth-century canon: hidden in plain sight : The scarlet letter ; Melville's Moby-dick ; Thoreau's Walden ; James's The American
  • Freud and film redux
  • Twentieth-century classics and new technologies of legibility : Wharton's Summer ; Fitzgerald's The great Gatsby as a "modernist" western ; Hemingway's The sun also rises
  • Race/erasure: Douglass to Roth
  • Equivocal epilogue: total visibility in utopia and dystopia.