By J. Kerry Grant
To the uninitiated, Thomas Pynchon’s V. turns out to defy comprehension with its open-ended and fragmented narrative, large forged of characters (some a hundred and fifty of them), and wide variety of frequently vague references. J. Kerry Grant’s Companion to “V.” takes us throughout the novel bankruptcy by way of bankruptcy, breaking via its daunting floor via summarizing occasions and clarifying Pynchon’s many allusions. The Companion attracts broadly from latest serious and explicative paintings on V. to signify the variety of interpretations that the unconventional can support.
The hundreds of thousands of notes that contain the Companion are keyed to the 3 most generally pointed out variants of V. so much notes are interpretive, yet a few additionally offer old and cultural contexts or aid to resurrect different nuances of that means. since it doesn't represent a selected “reading” of, or “take” on, the radical, the Companion will attract a variety of clients. instead of trying to make ultimate experience of the radical, the Companion exposes and demystifies Pynchon’s reason to play with our traditional attitudes approximately fiction.
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Yusef is aware of a diplomatic crisis that is brewing in the Nile Valley, where British and French colonial interests are threatening to clash. Among those present are Porpentine and Goodfellow, the two men whose encounter at the cafe has just been recounted from the perspective of the waiter, Aieul. Yusef recognizes in both the reflexes of professional men of violence and wonders what has brought them to the party. A man with blue eyeglasses appears to be connected with the underlying sense of menace that Yusef identifies.
17 B 2 1 . 20n. 23 I was born in a Hooverville "Hoover ville" was the name coined for any temporary shantytown put together during the Great Depression. Slade argues that Profane's birthplace makes him "the proletarian of the novel, the Sancho Panza to Stencil's Don Quixote, the citizen of the secular world that his name indicates" (93). Profane's point is that he too has been witness to human suffering—to the deaths of fathers, the departure of brothers, 16 A C O M P A N I O N TO V. the tears of children.
Matthijs is almost alone in championing a more positive view of Stencil. Drawing on Eliade's concept of "le temps sacre," a time "characterized as cyclical and recurrent/7 he suggests that Stencil's search qualifies him as a "sacred man [who] creates Cosmos out of Chaos" (141). e. this homogeneity is disrupted—the disruption being the intrusion of the sacred" (Matthijs 138). ). It seems when the priest/V is dismantled, an old mechanist world-view is dismantled, replaced by a statistics/relativity/quantum theory based view—even more insidiously in Their service, but not as easy to 'grip/ Stencil jr, born 1901, chronicles the death/dismantling of V, and the Victorian world, and of course also helps to establish continuity, and shows what does not 'die7" (Hartwin A.
A Companion to V. by J. Kerry Grant