Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Some thoughts about Dhalgren...

Wow. I'm not sure where to start (I think Delany would consider that a literary victory on his part), but I will try:

- Where or what is Bellona?

- What is the Kid's real name?

- How is Kid's state of mind portrayed? Is he insane?

- How are gender roles portrayed in the book?

- Who or what is Roger Calkins? Who or what is Ernest Newboy? What role they play in creation and publication of Kid's poems?

- Did Jack kill Paul Fenster?

- What about the all the sex; is it necessary?

- Dhalgren was begun in 1968. How might the political events of that time influenced its subject matter?

- What are some the other ambiguities that are never resolved (e.g., the red eyes, the scratch on many of the female characters calves, etc.)? Do these have a function within the story?

Here's a literary biography of Delany written by himself under a penname. Towards the end is an extensive bibliography of critical texts dealing with his work.


We'll be meeting to discuss this book January 15th at the Main Library in Conference Rm 3 at 6pm. Feel free to bring food and drink.

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