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Routledge Research in American Literature and Culture


About the Series

This series is our home for cutting-edge, upper-level scholarly studies and edited collections. Titles are characterized by dynamic interventions into established subjects and innovative studies on emerging topics in American Literature and Culture.

35 Series Titles

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Humor and Masculinity in U.S. Fiction Intersections, Performances, and Functions

Humor and Masculinity in U.S. Fiction: Intersections, Performances, and Functions

1st Edition

Forthcoming

By Joseph L. Coulombe
November 08, 2024

Humor and Masculinity in U.S. Fiction offers a pragmatic and theoretically informed model for analyzing how humor and gender intersect in key U.S. texts, bringing much needed attention to the complex ways that humor can support and/or subvert reductive masculine codes and behaviors.  Its argument ...

Norman Maclean’s “A River Runs through It” The Search for Beauty

Norman Maclean’s “A River Runs through It”: The Search for Beauty

1st Edition

Forthcoming

By George H. Jensen, Heidi Skurat Harris
July 31, 2024

Norman Maclean’s “A River Runs through It”: The Search for Beauty is the first book-length study of Norman Maclean or any of his works. Since the publication of “A River Runs through It” in 1976, readers and critics have considered it to be one of the most carefully crafted stories in American ...

Postmodernism, Twenty-First Century Culture, and American Fiction Establishing the Continuum

Postmodernism, Twenty-First Century Culture, and American Fiction: Establishing the Continuum

1st Edition

Forthcoming

By Matt Graham
July 19, 2024

Postmodernism’s ‘end’ is a complex and contentious topic. Yet, one overarching consensus emerges: the postmodern has been surpassed. This book poses a thought experiment challenging this position – what if postmodernism persists within the twenty-first century? Rather than designate a new epoch or ...

The Problem of Free Will in David Foster Wallace

The Problem of Free Will in David Foster Wallace

1st Edition

By Paolo Pitari
June 27, 2024

This book argues that David Foster Wallace failed to provide a response to the existential predicament of our time. Wallace wanted to confront despair through art, but he remained trapped, and his entrapment originates in the "existentialist contradiction": the impossibility of affirming the ...

Asian American War Stories Trauma and Healing in Contemporary Asian American Literature

Asian American War Stories: Trauma and Healing in Contemporary Asian American Literature

1st Edition

By Jeffrey Tyler Gibbons
May 27, 2024

Asian American War Stories examines contemporary Asian American literature that considers both the short-term and the long-term effects of war, trauma, and displacement on civilians, as well as the ways that individuals seek healing in the face of suffering. Through the works of contemporary ...

Authoritarianism and Class in American Political Fiction Elite Pluralism and Political Bosses in Three Post-War Novels

Authoritarianism and Class in American Political Fiction: Elite Pluralism and Political Bosses in Three Post-War Novels

1st Edition

By David Smit
January 29, 2024

This book analyzes what many critics consider to be the three best examples of modern American political fiction—Robert Penn Warren’s All the King’s Men, Edwin O’Connor’s The Last Hurrah, and Billy Lee Brammer’s The Gay Place—to address a specific problem in American governance: how the intense ...

Death, Time and Mortality in the Later Novels of Don DeLillo

Death, Time and Mortality in the Later Novels of Don DeLillo

1st Edition

By Philipp Wolf
January 29, 2024

This book offers the first systematic study of death in the later novels of Don DeLillo. It focuses on Underworld to The Silence, along with his 1984 novel White Noise, in which the fear of death dominates the protagonists most hauntingly. The study covers eight novels, which mark the development ...

Lynd Ward’s Wordless Novels, 1929-1937 Visual Narrative, Cultural Politics, Homoeroticism

Lynd Ward’s Wordless Novels, 1929-1937: Visual Narrative, Cultural Politics, Homoeroticism

1st Edition

By Grant F. Scott
January 29, 2024

This book offers the first multidisciplinary analysis of the "wordless novels" of American woodcut artist and illustrator Lynd Ward (1905–1985), who has been enormously influential in the development of the contemporary graphic novel. The study examines his six pictorial novels, each part of an ...

J. Hillis Miller and the Play of Literature

J. Hillis Miller and the Play of Literature

1st Edition

By Jonathan Locke Hart
December 27, 2023

This is the first book to discuss the full sweep of the work of J. Hillis Miller, from his earliest writing in the 1950s to those near the time of his death in February 2021, across the genres of his criticism and theory—poetry, fiction, drama, fiction, non-fiction. The book examines Miller’s ...

Unhappy Beginnings Narratives of Precarity, Failure, and Resistance in North American Texts

Unhappy Beginnings: Narratives of Precarity, Failure, and Resistance in North American Texts

1st Edition

Edited By Isabel González-Díaz, Fabián Orán-Llarena
December 22, 2023

This book offers the analysis of a selection of North American texts that dismantle and resist normative frames through the resignification of concepts such as unhappiness, precarity, failure, and vulnerability. The chapters bring to the fore how those potentially negative elements can be refigured...

Global Ambiguity in Nineteenth-Century American Gothic A Study in Form, History, and Culture

Global Ambiguity in Nineteenth-Century American Gothic: A Study in Form, History, and Culture

1st Edition

By Wanlin Li
September 25, 2023

As part of a larger attempt to understand the dynamic interactions between gothic form and ideology, this volume focuses on a strong formal feature of the American gothic, "global ambiguity," and examines the important cultural work it performs in the nineteenth-century history of the genre. ...

Marginalisation and Utopia in Paul Auster, Jim Jarmusch and Tom Waits The Other America

Marginalisation and Utopia in Paul Auster, Jim Jarmusch and Tom Waits: The Other America

1st Edition

By Adriano Tedde
September 25, 2023

This book explores how three contemporary American artists through the mediums of film, literature and popular music have contributed to the tradition of American progressivism, and provides an invaluable companion to the understanding of complex issues such as inequality and social and economic ...

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