30 March 2004

“At Sea”

The next section got really tricky. More sex! Between Alfred and Enid! With Denise in the womb! It seems that Franzen has converted my classroom into a sex-focused literature classroom. Oh well, it isn’t the only one: Zach Lamm beat me to it, and it’s all his class is about. . . .

I’m interested in Alfred’s hallucinations in this section, especially how Franzen frames everything on the instability and treachery of the sea. It makes the “turd” scenes all the more poignant.

I’m also interested in the frequent references to The Chronicles of Narnia, especially The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. What is Franzen trying to do with these references?

Next up . . . “The Generator”!

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