ENGL 458

Contemporary American Fiction

This is an upper-division seminar focused on American fiction written from 1945 to the present. Situating contemporary U.S. fiction in the literary, historical, and cultural contexts pertinent to its creation, the course attends to a variety of issues, which may include canon debates, postmodernism, the relation of history and fiction, the politics of literary form, the prominence of fiction by women and writers of color, and other developments of cultural importance (such as environmentalism, digital media, and post-industrialism, to name a few). Questions of narration, character, plot, and setting are examined, even as the course considers whether contemporary fiction demands new categories of analysis.