Title

Flack

Award Date

5-1-2013

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)

Department

English

First Committee Member

Douglas Unger

Second Committee Member

Richard Wiley

Third Committee Member

Maile Chapman

Fourth Committee Member

Sean Clark

Number of Pages

250

Abstract

This novel is written primarily in the mode of a literary realist bildungsroman, with elements of social satire and political farce. The story recounts the events surrounding a contemporary campaign for the United States Senate, structured and narrated in a traditional manner, covering the events leading up to the campaign and delving into the private life of the first-person narrator. The work, though grounded in fiction, draws on personal experience in the political world. Its goal is to capture a particular moment in American political and social history, when the nation was coming to the end of two long wars, the populace was ideologically and socially polarized, political power seesawed from right to left and back in a series of "wave" elections, and technology rapidly transformed the political process--making campaigns longer, more rigorous, and more expensive than ever before. This narrative further seeks to explore universal themes of the will to power, commitment and sacrifice, and loyalty and betrayal. The central figure, a former navy admiral, draws on the archetype of the captain in the American literary tradition, established in Herman Melville's Moby Dick and invoked in Herman Wouk's The Caine Mutiny. It owes a substantial debt to Robert Penn Warren's All the King's Men, Joe Klein's Primary Colors, and Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 1972.

Keywords

Bildungsromans; Fiction; Political campaigns; Social satire

Disciplines

Fiction

Language

English

Available for download on Thursday, May 31, 2018


Included in

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