Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2013

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)



First Advisor

Marcia Douglas

Second Advisor

Elisabeth Sheffield

Third Advisor

Nan Goodman


A long thought entirely contingent upon its discursive context, which, here, does not exceed two decades of uninterrupted memory. Before that, the ocean. Central discursive formations include: family life; church and religion; higher education (post-structuralism); the so-called Canon and its literary theory; syntactically intrusive 20th and 21st century fiction writers; supermarket receipts; weddings; old photo albums; childhood sweatshirts all chewed up at the collar—that stuff the author might qualify as familiar. Like all friction, this is a coming of age friction. A particular attention is paid to praxis—a truth evident even in the collection’s title— though straying too far into the territories of hope and excessive optimism is, frankly, impolitic (poststructuralism). Cultural hybridity performs literary hybridity, and also the inverse is true. From this nuance stems the subtitle. To intimate more by writing The Dilemma of The Hyphen, or Fiction and Nonfiction, etc., would be particularly egotistical and offensive; indeed, implicit in each friction is an apology to its reader—for not remembering everything, first, and for not bothering to, second. This thread of neuroticism must recur. Insofar as the collection participates in the generally off-putting discourse of metafiction, it seems appropriate that its abstract mention—therefore perform—as much. You have, just now, been warned.