Chants of Dispossession and Exile: the Yuroks in Vineland

Authors: ,


In his most recent novel, Thomas Pynchon repeatedly refers to the customs and lore of the Yuroks, an Indian tribe settled in the northern California coastal region, the location of the fictitious Vineland county. Concepts from Yurok culture figure overtly and covertly throughout the narrative, offering interpretive possibilities for understanding the text as a whole. They contribute to a node of themes including money, death and childhood; they reveal some of the roads not taken by U.S. society; and they pose the question whether the very complexities of postindustrial America encourage a resurgence of so-called primitive ideological patterns in forming a weltanschauung.


How to Cite: Becke, R. & Vanderbeke, D. (1992) “Chants of Dispossession and Exile: the Yuroks in Vineland”, Pynchon Notes.(0). doi: