University of Cambridge Contemporary Research Group

A.M. Homes, a ‘very American writer’


Carrying on our discussion about ‘global’ and ‘national’ literature . . .

A.M. Homes has just won the 2013 ‘Women’s Prize’ for May We Be Forgiven.  The Guardian  asked if she had set out to write a ‘Great American Novel’: ‘Homes says she’s thought about this, and did once look up the way that that phrase was first intended. “It was not meant as a critical judgement – ‘Oh, this is a great American novel’ – but great as in expansive, and far reaching, and so in that sense, absolutely, very much, I think of myself, in positive and negative ways, as a very American writer.”‘

Far-reaching but only so far then.

1 Comment

  1. Kasia Boddy

    And now Rachel Kushner, feted for The Flamethrowers, joins in: “I don’t really know what the Great American Novel is. I like the idea that there could be one now and I wouldn’t object if someone thought it was mine, but I don’t claim to have written that – I just wrote my book.” (The Guardian, 23 Aug 2013)

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