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Title: Redeeming the betrayed body : technology and embodiment in the fiction of Thomas Pynchon and Don DeLillo
Author: Fahim, Abeer Abdel Raouf
ISNI:       0000 0004 2712 9349
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis presents a reading of the fiction of Don DeLillo and Thomas Pynchon that focuses on the significance of embodiment in the authors’ technologically mediated worlds. The study draws upon the work of Vivian Sobchack, Steven Connor, Merleau-Ponty, and Jean-Paul Sartre. Critics of DeLillo and Pynchon’s fiction have generally avoided phenomenological perspectives; as a result, the concept of corporeality has not been thoroughly examined. Thus, the thesis examines the fiction of Pynchon and DeLillo in light of theories of embodiment that have been overlooked. Central to the thesis is a study of the theoretical and technical aspects of visual and auditory technology that is focused on how the authors depict an intrinsic connection between the physical body and prosthetics. To subvert the conventional dichotomy between the human and the technological, the thesis explores the sensory experiences of the characters, drawing attention to the inextricable connection between the body and the world. The analysis also considers the significance of the unity of the senses and the connection this has to the manner in which the body’s materiality is depicted. Moreover, the concept of monstrosity is used to explore how the authors portray the fluidity and the multiplicity of the human body. Giving a close reading of the body’s inherent connection to technology and the prominence of materiality, the thesis suggests that the characters depict subjective experiences that are rooted in their physicality. Technology is not perceived, in its conventional sense, as a means of disembodying the characters; on the contrary, it is the gateway to exploring corporeality.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available