Abstracts of Papers
City, Circuit, and Conspiracy in Joseph McElroy's Lookout Cartridge (1974) and Don DeLillo's Players (1977)
In postmodern fiction, cities - if they have not become invisible - have been replaced by, or become metaphors for, larger communicative and integrative systems which have made the structures and oppositions of earlier city fiction obsolete. At the same time, their city-as-system has also generated a counter-image of opaque and lybyrinthine urban space either beyond systematization or left behind it. Conspiracies rise on both sides in the name of, or in opposition to, the forces of homogenization. The paper will explore these new urban (or post-urban) images as they are projected in several novels of the seventies, but will focus especially on McElroy's Lookout Cartridge (1974) and DeLillo's Players (1977).