Thomas Pynchon, Gravity’s Rainbow
Wednesdays, April 3-May 8, 2019 (six sessions)
Guide: Christopher Zinn, Tuition: $45
Gravity’s Rainbow (1973) brought Thomas Pynchon the National Book Award and coronation as the crafty artificer of a postmodern epic set principally in Europe in the waning days of WWII. The novel’s sprawling and eccentric narrative, by turns antic and somber, offers readers a mostly delightful challenge and rewards them with a unique, some would say essential, picture of the instances and forces that have shaped the fate of humanity in the last century. Pynchon’s all-over literary canvas looks even richer, now, since the publication of his later novels, such as Mason & Dixon (1997) and Against the Day (2006), which together comprise something like a continued exploration of our times. Lovers of challenging literature and students of our present day world will find a welcome place around the discussion table for this remarkable book.
Reading List: Gravity’s Rainbow, Penguin Classics Deluxe edition
Christopher Zinn grew up in Pine City, NY, and was educated at Georgetown and New York University, where he received his Ph.D. in English and American Literature. Zinn lectures and writes frequently on American literature and culture, and currently teaches humanities at the Portland Waldorf High School. 2018/2019 marks his twelfth season as a Delve Guide.