In Communities in Fiction J. Hillis Miller studies fictional representations of community in novels by Trollope, Hardy, Conrad, Woolf, and stories by Pynchon and Cervantes, to show how literature can help us understand the agonistic communal structure of the world we inhabit. Miller links rhetorical readings of his chosen writers to poststructuralist theories of community to offer a defense of literature for our digital age. Henry Sussman's Playful Intelligence expresses a similar interest in digital culture, demonstrating how modernism anticipates innovative thought in cybernetic systems theory. Drawing on a range of theoretical discourses, as well as artists and thinkers including Kandinsky, Kafka, Benjamin, Döblin, Winnicott, and Hofstadter, Sussman argues that newly emergent disciplines provide the critic with a language for articulating aesthetic experience that can, in turn, enable creative intelligence to thrive and thus become a provisional palliative for coping with the extreme conditions of modern life.


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pp. 166-177
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