Interlacings: Naturalism and Christianity in Frank Norris's McTeague
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I attempted this essay last year while confronting my fundamental question about literary criticism: “why bother?” An interdisciplinary major, I have always been interested in pushing at the boundaries of the fields I study and I wanted to challenge myself to move beyond the tendency to tie up literature with the ribbons of tidy theories, encapsulating them into orderly packages. I had been reading Derrida’s Margins of Philosophy at the time and was taken by what he terms différance, which “exceeds the order of truth at a certain precise point.” For me this essay was a self-directed challenge and a very personal exercise to see if I could breathe life into Norris’s text by allowing it to speak for itself in all its contradictions and multiplicity.