Crossing the Utopian/Apocalyptic Border: The Anxiety of Forgetting in Paul Auster’s In the Country of Last Things

  • Dylan Winchock


Winchock utilizes Paul Ricoeur’s philosophy of memory and narrative to study the human need to locate identity at the intersection of spatio-temporal narratives. Winchock argues that the highly policed border between apocalypse and Utopia is a fantasy, where Borderland testimonies ‘rooted’ in fragmentation and mobility become tactics of political resistance against disappearance and amnesia. Winchock argues that Paul Auster’s post-apocalyptic novel reveals the importance of testifying to the ‘last things’ cleared away by apocalypse as though it were ‘the first time,’ thus allowing oneself to see the familiar from new and shifting perspectives. It is through these tactical testimonies that the forgotten, erased, and silenced can be recalled and reconfigured in order to produce an ephemeral sense of wholeness.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dylan Winchock
    • 1
  1. 1.California State UniversitySan MarcosUSA

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