Richard Yates and the Flawed American Dream

Critical Essays


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SKU: 9781476668253 Categories: ,

About the Book

Richard Yates (1926–1992) has been described as a “writer’s writer” but has never received the critical attention befitting that designation. Firmly rooted in the zeitgeist of 1950s, his work remains startlingly relevant, addressing themes of American identity, the nature of marriage and relationships between men and women, and what it means to get ahead in a society entranced by a flawed American Dream.
This collection of new essays is the first to focus on this under-appreciated author. It opens up his body of work for a new generation of readers, and positions Yates as a writer of significance in the American tradition.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer Daly maintains research interest in American literature of the 20th and 21st centuries and has published work on Richard Yates and Richard Ford. She lives in Ireland.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Jennifer Daly
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 188
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliographies, index
Copyright Date: 2017
pISBN: 978-1-4766-6825-3
eISBN: 978-1-4766-2957-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii
Introduction 1
Jennifer Daly
Revolutionary Road: Mental Illness and ­Socio-Political Control (Joanna Wilson) 11
Playing Suburbia in Revolutionary Road (Rory McGinley) 30
The Geography of Identity in The Easter Parade (Rona Cran) 50
Aversion as Diversion: The Politics of Disgust in Cold Spring Harbor (Chloé Avril) 70
Richard Yates’s Autofictions and the Politics of Canonization (Sophie A. Jones) 87
Richard Yates and Marriage: The Failed Idea of America and the Legacy of F. Scott Fitzgerald (Helen Turner) 107
What About the Children? (Kate ­Charlton-Jones) 122
Performing Masculinity, Masculinity as Performance: Faking It as Men in the Short Fiction of Richard Yates (Karl Wood) 140
Antifeminist or Antipatriarchal? Richard Yates’s Critique of ­Hegemonic Masculinity in Young Hearts Crying (Rubén Cenamor) 158
About the Contributors 177
Index 179