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2016FallSymposiumURCreativityEngagement has ended
Tuesday, December 6 • 10:15am - 10:35am
The Fabric Of His Life: Exploring The Nature Of The Unreal In Look Homeward, Angel

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Thomas Wolfe describes Look Homeward, Angel in the book’s note to the reader as being drawn from “experience which is now far and lost, but which was once part of the fabric of his life.” Wolfe’s insistence of autobiography in Look Homeward, Angel makes the scenes of the fantastical and the unreal all the more striking. When Wolfe’s actual upbringing is examined, moreover, the scenes of the unreal emerge as coping mechanisms for various elements of his personal life. These episodes that are unmoored by reality distance Wolfe from various elements of his tumultuous childhood, whether it be his feelings of inadequacy when interacting with women, or the heartbreaking loss of his brother. Once these coping mechanisms are identified, Eugene, who is a placeholder for Wolfe himself, becomes a more unreliable source of narration, resulting in a reading experience that is rooted in truth, but is never too far from a scene of pure wonderment.


Tuesday December 6, 2016 10:15am - 10:35am
232 Karpen Hall