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Article

Онтология антологии: Современная американская проза по версии издательства «Нортон»

Литература двух Америк. 2016. № 1. С. 265-286.

Nine editions of The Norton Anthology of American Literature (1979-2016) are an important symptom of the scholarly paradigm in the US literary studies shaped at the turn of the 21st century. After a brief outline of the genre’s history and its stance on the American book market I provide a detailed investigation of the changes in the editorial team, its selective strategies, and some trajectories taken in including and/or omitting individual authors within the “Literature since 1945” section of the anthology. The complete lists of editors and anthologized contemporary authors in the two respective tables are charted to trace the reconfigurations of the two sets of names from first to latest editions. My paper reveals the ahistorical nature of the Norton project, which corresponds to the cultural atmosphere of the United States in the aftermath of the “canon wars” in the American cultural studies of the 1980-90s. The qualitative relation between the anthologized writers’ fiction and the editors’ critical introductions and commentary suggests that the anthology’s content and structure is isomorphic to some postmodern practices of the very literature whose onthological meta-description the anthology undertakes.