Nathanael West’s A Cool Million, our text for Monday (following the flipped schedule for next week I mentioned today), offers us a different direction in which to take our thinking so far about fiction, narrative, and the monstrous — West’s novella takes place in a world that lacks the fantastical elements that have defined the texts we’ve read so far, but is perhaps no less monstrous in its own way.
I’m going to make this first post on this text open-ended — you’re welcome to engage our reading for Monday along whatever lines intrigue you, as long as you frame your response in a critical, analytical way and ground it in quotation and analysis of some specific material from the text. One way to approach it might be to think about where and how we might find monstrosity in this text, and what West is doing with monstrosity as a narrative and social tool. But there are lots of other issues to explore here as well — I’m intrigued to see what everyone makes of this material!
Reminder: your response should go in the comments section for this post — click the “Leave a Comment” link at the top of the post. It should be at least 250 words, and is due by midnight on Sunday, October 16th. After class on Monday, you should return to this thread and post a response to one classmate’s post by class time Wednesday the 19th. If you have any questions, let me know via email.