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Aggressive FictionsReading the Contemporary American Novel$
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Kathryn Hume

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801450013

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801450013.001.0001

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Why Read Aggressive Fictions?

Why Read Aggressive Fictions?

(p.164) Conclusion Why Read Aggressive Fictions?
Aggressive Fictions

Kathryn Hume

Cornell University Press

This concluding chapter offers some final insights on aggressive fiction and why it is worthwhile to read material that makes us uncomfortable or actively upsets or revolts us. It returns to the modes of aggression discussed in previous chapters, explaining that these carry contradictions at their heart that cannot readily be resolved. Then the chapter goes on to examine how these properties of aggressive fiction “attack” the reader, suggesting that such fictions encourage alternate interpretive strategies, that they refuse to make instruction easy, offer temporary freedom from our preconceptions and prejudices, and that, among other things, they do not form a tidy subgenre. This chapter elaborates on the experiences of the reader as they tackle these aggressive fictions, and why they are and should keep on reading them.

Keywords:   aggressive fictions, alternate interpretive strategies, aggressive novels, attacking the reader, reader's preconceptions, reader's prejudices

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