The digital intensification of postmodern poetics

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Book chapter

Source Publication

The poetics of genre in the contemporary novel

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Lexington Books


The millennial turn and the rise of digital culture have fostered a new genre of novels that scholars and publishers alike have had difficulty defining. Written at the intersection of digital, information, and visual cultures, novels such as Gary Shteyngart’s Super Sad True Love Story (2010) and Steven Hall’s The Raw Shark Texts (2007) incorporate e-mails, instant messaging, flipbooks, and concrete images into the text. This chapter seeks to develop a comprehensive theory of such novels and the various genre labels for them: experimental, avant-garde, speculative, multimodal, science fiction, intermedial, and so forth. Such genre labels are likely ascribed because these novels engage in an interplay with poetics that are traditionally tied to other literary texts, formal features, styles, and aesthetics. As these poetics are often exercised through pastiche, intertextuality, and parody, the novels have also been tied to the poetics of the postmodern novel.

Publisher Statement

Copyright © Lexington Books 2016.

Additional Information

ISBN of the source publication: 9781498517287



Recommended Citation

Fan, L.-T. (2016). The digital intensification of postmodern poetics. In Tim Lanzendörfer (Ed.), The poetics of genre in the contemporary novel (pp.35-55). Lanham, Maryland: Lexington Books.

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