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International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences
ILSHS Volume 64

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Collapsing Time, Chaotic Consciousness: Reading Don DeLillo's Point Omega from the Perspective of Postmodern Gothic

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The intense concerns with time, space and consciousness structure modernist and postmodernist Gothic narratives with the elements been treated much differently in these periods from the previous ages, owing to the hypotheses of great twentieth and twenty first century philosophers such as Henri Bergson, Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger and Jean-Paul Sartre, later to be followed by Gilles Deleuze, for whom the linear spatialized concept of time and the traditional notions of space and consciousness are no more than ideal speculations and to whom the existential views of time, space and consciousness make reasonable substitutes.Don DeLillo's Point Omega is among the postmodern works which touch upon philosophical contemplations on metaphysical dilemmas such as the meaning of true life, ultimate consciousness, unanimity of perception and reality, and extraterrestrial concepts of time and space. It is set in a traumatized present, outside of history while the very absence of future and the grip of the past it represents as well as the melancholy stasis it imposes become at once sources of revelation and triggers for a sense of uncanny to evoke. The reflections of irregular movements of time, space and memory as well as their constant "becoming" in postmodern Gothic can be used in suggestive assemblage with Gilles Deleuze's philosophical ones. It seems that the filmic desert wherein most of the narration takes place is ineluctably haunted by the Gothic spirit of Psycho, a terror-inspiring film with which it shares a number of images and incidents. However, it is the Deleuzian essences of time and space that most contribute to Point Omega's Gothic texture.By dissolving the two texts, Point Omega and Psycho, into each other and constituting a labyrinthine network of Gothicized associations and affinities, DeLillo has presented a magnificent work within the tradition of postmodern Gothic, which exceeds in both intellect and percipience from most of his contemporary novels'. Like the unnatural slowed-down time and space it presents, Point Omega demands a slow and conscientious reading while at the same time promising new ideas and revelations to the critics and scholars each time they attempt to work on it with devoted attention and mediation.


International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences (Volume 64)
M. Ghafoori and Z. Ramin, "Collapsing Time, Chaotic Consciousness: Reading Don DeLillo's Point Omega from the Perspective of Postmodern Gothic", International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences, Vol. 64, pp. 143-149, 2015
Online since:
November 2015

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