Mason and Dixon: Pynchon's Bickering Heroes (Thomas Pynchon) (Essay)
Pynchon Notes 2000, Spring, 46-49
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Many of Pynchon's characters are given to bickering. In Vineland, Van Meter engages with the other members of his "commune" in "energetic" and "relentless ... bickering raised to the level of ceremony" (9). Vato and Blood, the "towaway teammates" (177), engage in "recreational bickering" (185); if they cannot bicker about basketball because they both support the Lakers, they have "to find something else to bicker about," such as Jack Nicholson's sunglasses in a film (378). Vato and Blood's bickering, in spite of apparently signalling division, may, in fact, be a form of bonding, a displaced or disguised display of affection. These are minor characters, but the protagonists of Mason & Dixon are bickerers. Indeed, not only are those who drew the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland in the 1760s bickerers; the whole American nation is bickering as their story is being told: "This Christmastide of 1786, with the War settl'd and the Nation bickering itself into Fragments" (6). This early passage illustrates what bickering is and can lead to. Bickering is not merely arguing about insignificant matters; it is arguing that, although petty and insignificant, can, on the grand scale, bring about serious division. It is as if Pynchon were saying, if we bicker endlessly when we really have no reason for difference, division or antagonism, no wonder America and the rest of the world are in the state they are in.
- 2,99 €
- Categoria: Arti e discipline linguistiche
- Pubblicato: 22/03/2000
- Editore: Pynchon Notes
- Pagine: 36
- Lingua: Inglese