Author(s): Mark Steven & Julian Murphet
The Politics and Aesthetics of Cormac McCarthy's The Road brings together several leading literary scholars, one major philosopher, as well as a handful of emerging critical voices, all of whom deploy their own specialist methods in order to think through this bestselling, Zeitgeist-defining event of contemporary literature. There are two dominant modes of analysis gathered here: the first, performed by Julian Murphet, Paul Sheehan, and Mark Steven, is to locate the novel within its political, spiritual, and economic climates; the second, whose exponents include Paul Patton, Sean Pryor, Chris Danta, and Grace Hellyer, deals with the formal dimensions of McCarthy's characteristically brilliant prose in relation to its sparse narrative. By coupling historically sensitive analysis with incisive formal criticism, the contributors not only account for the matchless form of this exemplary novel; they also suggest that The Road has something unique to disclose about the world we inhabit.
Mark Steven is a PhD Candidate at the University of Sydney, Australia, where he teaches media, popular culture, and cultural theory and convenes the Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture research cluster. He has published articles and chapters on literature, cinema, and philosophy. Julian Murphet is Professor of Modern Film and Literature at the University of New South Wales, Australia. He is the author of Multimedia Modernism (Cambridge University Press, 2009), Literature and Race in Los Angeles (Cambridge University Press, 2001), co-author of Narrative and Media (Cambridge University Press, 2005), and co-editor of Literature and Visual Technologies (Palgrave Macmillan, 2003).
Introduction; Part One: The Aesthetics of Politics; 1. The Late World of Cormac McCarthy; Mark Steven; 2. All the Trees in the World: Cormac McCarthy and the Politics of the Worst; Paul Sheehan; 3. The Road and 'The End of Capitalism'; Julian Murphet; Part Two: The Politics of Aesthetics; 4. McCarthy's Rhythm; Sean Pryor; 5. The Cold Illucid World: Cormac McCarthy's Poetics of Gray; Chris Danta; 6. TBC: chapter on film adaptation; 6. Spring Has Lost its Scent: Allegory, Ruination, and Suicidal Melancholia; Grace Hellyer; 7. McCarthy's Fire; Paul Patton; Index; Bibliography.