rushthatspeaks: (sparklepony only wants to read)
By the time you finish reading this review, I intend to convince you that you have seen a ghost. I believe that in the majority of cases I will be successful.

Yes, I do mean you, whoever you are, reading this now. And yes, by ghost I do mean a spectre raised from an untimely grave to torment the guilt of the living and deny the peace of the dead, and by seen I mean seen, with your eyes, or possibly in some circumstances heard with your ears; I mean these things absolutely literally.

Having said that, I will now proceed to tell you that this slender little book of literary criticism, The National Uncanny, is one of the very best books I have read in an extremely long time, one of those books which makes the inside of the reader's head a different and a better place. It is a study of the figure of the Native American as ghost in American literature, but it contains wildly impressive theoretical insights on a variety of different topics at the rate of slightly more than one insight per paragraph. I found myself trying to quote some of the better bits to my wife a while ago and discovered I was literally just reading out loud without being able to skip anything. This is not the way I am accustomed to academic criticism working, although it is the way I would always like it to work.

This is a cut because this entry is really very long indeed. )


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March 2017

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