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Reading Landscape in American Literature: The Outside in the Fiction of Don DeLillo ...

Chapter :  Introduction: An American Literature of the Outside
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Reading Landscape in American Literature:


An American Literature
of the Outside

There is no longer a tripartite division between a field of reality (the world) and a field of representation (the book) and a field of subjectivity (the author). Rather, an assemblage establishes connections between certain multiplicities drawn from each of these orders, so that a book has no sequel nor the world as its object nor one or several authors as its subject. In short, we think that one cannot write sufficiently in the name of an outside. The outside has no image, no signification, no subjectivity. The book as assemblage with the outside, against the book as image of the world.

––Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, A Thousand Plateaus

This study argues for a new model of reading landscape in the twentieth- and twenty-first-century American novel. I take as exemplary the novels of Don DeLillo—and in particular the main focus of this study, The Body Artist—which have constructed landscapes that exceed the limits