Postmodernism in White Noise by Don Delillo and Rabbit, Run by John Updike

2534 Words Aug 17th, 2008 11 Pages
Thesis statement: The constant change in the world, as evidenced by consumerism in the books Rabbit, Run by John Updike and White Noise by Don DeLillo, gives a false sense of security to the protagonists of the two books thereby blurring the reality they are in and destroying them in the end.

Don deLillo’s White Noise: Postmodern elements Most postmodern books have been published after World War II. First published in 1984, White Noise by Don deLillo explores the emergence of technology, popular culture, and media in the eyes of Jack Gladney, a professor and the chairman of Hitler studies in the College-on-the Hill.
“All plots tend to move deathward,” Jack surprisingly remarks in one of his lectures. Considering his pervading
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The old people, specifically the Treadwells, find the supermarket a fearful place. For them, the mall can swallow them up in its vastness. This can be interpreted as the lack of adaptation skills of older people to modern technology as compared to the younger ones. But in a way, the supermarket only gives a false sense of security because it is not constant. At the end of the novel, it is said that the supermarket’s contents are rearranged, throwing the individuals “in a state of panic and confusion.” Here, “the supposed consumers end up consumed themselves (Sparknotes, 2006).”
Technology, in general, gives a false sense of security to Jack and the other characters in the novel. Examples are when Jack feels in control when he withdraws from the ATM, or their Friday night ritual of watching television as a form of bonding. Another pertinent example is when Jack’s wife, Babette, is secretly taking pills called Dylar, supposedly alleviating her fear of death. But instead of doing that, Dylar changes her into a withdrawn individual. It is also through Dylar that the fact that she has committed infidelity toward her husband just to procure this unlicensed medication is revealed, thus crumbling all the walls of security that Jack had built around himself. Babette made him feel secure, and

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