Metalepses and Shoelaces: Advanced Narrative Resources in Nicholson Baker’s The Mezzanine
Nicholson Baker’s The Mezzanine (1988) bends narrative boundaries to the extreme. This article analyses the novel’s postmodern metatextuality, its confrontation of high culture and mass culture, its exploration of recursive thought processes, its inclusion of constantly shifting time references, and the function of its autodiegetic narrator. Special attention is given to the use of the footnote as a narrative device as it allows Baker to develop Gérard Genette’s concept of narrative metalepsis. Because of the unique way these advanced narrative resources are interwoven, the novel deserves wider academic attention as a milestone in contemporary literature in English.
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