Magical Realism and Intertextuality in Selected 20th Century American Ethnic Novels


  • Tidita Abdurrahmani Faculty of Philology and Education, Department of Educational Sciences, Bedër University, Tirana, Albania



Magical Realism and Intertextuality in Selected 20th Century American Ethnic Novels


The focus of this contribution is on the elements of magical realism and intertextuality in 20th century American Ethnic Novels. To some critics a text is just a palimpsest or tablet that has been written upon or inscribed two or three times. The other texts having been perfectly erased and remaining still partly visible. To this trait is associated even the idea that the intertext is a general field of anonynymous formulae, of unconscious or automatic quotations. Given without quotation marks. Sometimes attention to the character of intertextuality goes so far as to argue that the reader's own previous readings, experinces and position within the cultural formation also form a cruxial intertext. An in depth reading and analysis of John Barth, Thomas Pynchon, Irving Howe and Michael Kohler presented in this paper aims at proving proof to the widely held belief that intertextuality is the parasite that dwells within every postmodern text, especially American Postmodern literature. On the other hand unlike the fantastic or the surreal , magical realism presumes that the individual requires a bond with the tradition and the faith of community, that he or she is historically constructed and connected. The elements employed in magical realism are not completely fantastical and unearthly, they are just part of another culture and are dismissed by our rational Western minds as unreal and inpossible integral part of their reality. To put back together shattered cultural fragments through storytelling , often implies to remember , that is to put oneself , ones identity back together. The magical realism elements in Rudolf Anaya, Ralph Ellison. Leslie Marmon Silko and Thomas Pynchon show that this technique is the most adopted stylistic effect of relating the postmodern world to the preserved and revisisted cultural and historical traditions of the ethnic americans.