Reading: "Hi! My Name Is Arnold Snarb!": Homosexuality in The Crying of Lot 49

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"Hi! My Name Is Arnold Snarb!": Homosexuality in The Crying of Lot 49

Author:

Mark D. Hawthorne

James Madison University
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Abstract

The Crying of Lot 49 (1966) has evoked a wealth of critical attention, but this attention has overlooked its frequent references to male homosexuality. J. Kerry Grant, for example, in his Companion to The Crying of Lot 49, ignores all but a couple of Pynchon's most obvious gay talk or straight-slang references to homosexuality. On the one hand, Pynchon treats the hidden gay-world as an undesirable, almost unthinkable, underside of San Francisco, carrying the mark of the pariah; on the other hand, he makes it a necessary component of a distorted and distorting heterosexuality. Through her encounter with this homosexual underworld and its symbolic value system, Oedipa learns what it means to be a heterosexual woman capable of standing on her own in a world dominated by (supposedly) straight men.
How to Cite: D. Hawthorne, M., (1999). "Hi! My Name Is Arnold Snarb!": Homosexuality in The Crying of Lot 49. Pynchon Notes. (44-45), pp.65–81. DOI: http://doi.org/10.16995/pn.119
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Published on 22 Sep 1999.
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