Consumerism, Waste, and Re-Use in Twentieth-Century Fiction

Legacies of the Avant-Garde

Authors: Dini, Rachele

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  • Covers an impressive range of literary texts by writers including Loy, de Chirico, Beckett, Barthelme, Ballard, DeLillo, and Pynchon
  • Establishes the importance of the burgeoning fields of new materialism and waste studies
  • Lays out a powerful and convincing case of the avant-garde movement’s legacy.
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eBook $84.99
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  • ISBN 978-1-137-58165-5
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Hardcover $109.99
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Softcover $109.99
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  • ISBN 978-1-349-95496-4
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About this book

This book examines manufactured waste and remaindered humans in literary critiques of capitalism by twentieth-century writers associated with the historical avant-garde and their descendants. Building on recent work in new materialism and waste studies, Rachele Dini reads waste as a process or phase amenable to interruption. From an initial exploration of waste and re-use in three Surrealist texts by Giorgio de Chirico, André Breton, and Mina Loy, Dini traces the conceptualization of waste in the writing of Samuel Beckett, Donald Barthelme, J.G. Ballard, William Gaddis, and Don DeLillo. In exploring the relationship between waste, capitalism, and literary experimentation, this book shows that the legacy of the historical avant-garde is bound up with an enduring faith in the radical potential of waste. The first study to focus specifically on waste in the twentieth-century imagination, this is a valuable contribution to the expanding field of waste studies.

About the authors

Rachele Dini teaches at the Foundation for International Education and in the English Department at University College London, UK. She has a BA Hons from Cambridge University, an MA from King’s College London, and a PhD from University College London, UK. 

Reviews

“Rachele Dini achieves ontological clarity about that which makes us dirty. Conjuring up a surrealist epiphany, she reveals to us the beauty in unproductivity. The author suggests how post-millennial and neoliberal waste literature is innovative. In arguing that waste—something we urgently need to understand—is part of the interconnected narrative of us all, Dini's book forces us to confront that which we ethically need to encounter.” (Susan Signe Morrison, Professor of English, Texas State University, USA, and author of “The Literature of Waste: Material Ecopoetics and Ethical Matter”)

“In a series of lucid and acute readings of the modern novel, from André Breton to Tom McCarthy, Rachele Dini demonstrates how attention to the imaginative function of waste can help us rethink our understanding of the relationship between capitalism, realism, and the forces that shape our material environments.” (Peter Boxall, Professor of English, University of Sussex, UK)

“Drawing on an impressively wide range of European and Anglophone fiction, Rachele Dini considers the waste people produce and the people who are considered as waste. Dini makes the case for a dynamic and radical tradition of waste writing and, in doing so, wastes not a word herself.”  (Kasia Boddy, Reader in American Literature, University of Cambridge, UK)

“Rachele Dini’s brilliantly constructed book shows how waste studies, avant-garde aesthetics, and the analysis of consumer culture work to foreground literature as the terrain where the denunciatory power of waste can be affirmed. At a time when the humanities are made to appear increasingly marginal, this book is a call to the reader and critic to resist as humanists, so that literature can stand as a locus for the critique of capital.” (Maurizia Boscagli, Associate Professor of English, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, and author of “Stuff Theory: Everyday Objects, Radical Materialism”)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $84.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-1-137-58165-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $109.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-137-59061-9
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $109.99
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-349-95496-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Consumerism, Waste, and Re-Use in Twentieth-Century Fiction
Book Subtitle
Legacies of the Avant-Garde
Authors
Copyright
2016
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan US
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-1-137-58165-5
DOI
10.1057/978-1-137-58165-5
Hardcover ISBN
978-1-137-59061-9
Softcover ISBN
978-1-349-95496-4
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIV, 253
Number of Illustrations
15 b/w illustrations
Topics