Pynchon and History
Metahistorical Rhetoric and Postmodern Narrative Form in the Novels of Thomas Pynchon
By Shawn Smith
Routledge – 2005 – 256 pages
While many previous books on Pynchon allude to his fictional engagement with historical events and figures, this book explores Pynchon as a historical novelist and, by extension, historical thinker. The book interprets Pynchon's four major novels V., Gravity's Rainbow, Vineland, and Mason & Dixon through the prism of historical interpretation and representation. In doing so, it argues that Pynchon's innovative narrative techniques express his philosophy of history and historical representation through the form of his texts.