Unlike the majority of American academic critics, author Paul Giaimo contends that Don DeLillo's award-winning novels are fully defined by neither postmodernism nor modernism. To demonstrate this thesis, Appreciating Don DeLillo: The Moral Force of a Writer's Work traces DeLillo's style through his novels, showing how it evolved from a recognizably postmodern mode into a realistic treatment of contemporary, postmodern conditions.
In this original and nuanced examination, Giaimo discusses themes that range from the devastating portrayals of evil in Mao II, Libra and Cosmopolis, to the good and inspiring confrontation of media stereotypes and urban missionary work in Underworld. The powerful vision of language in The Names and White Noise is examined as a potent moral force of the novels. Equally important is discussion of the cultural background Giaimo believes should inform any reading of DeLillo's work, especially his Italian-American ethnic heritage and the American Catholic church of the 1950s.
About the Author:
Paul Giaimo, PhD, is instructor of English and philosophy at Highland Community College, Freeport, IL.