John Dugdale

Joyce Would Be Proud

Only Revolutions

By

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Mark Danielewski had a promising go at creating unreadable fiction in his debut, House of Leaves. Crudely summarisable as a horror story about a house that keeps alarmingly changing shape, it featured three layered narratives – records in various media kept by the family who lived there, the notebooks of a blind man obsessed with the house and the family’s terrifying experiences, and the ramblings of a tattooist who discovered these notebooks after their author’s death.

Readers were also asked to cope with myriad textual forms and visual materials, a plethora of footnotes, and typographical antics. The key non-horror influences were clearly Laurence Sterne and Lewis Carroll, but filtered through Godardian art cinema and Derrida.

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