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Unity and Closure: A Performatist Reading of Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
The current research paper attempts at exploring and analyzing Performatism with its various features in a contemporary American novel Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo. The study is developed in the background of the recent propositions in literary theory which have tried to emphasize and argue that postmodernism is dead or in the process of dying and is being replaced by new theoretical and methodological concepts like metamodernism, remodernism, digimodernism, hypermodernism, performatism, post-postmodernism etc. However, there is so far no consensus as to which literary theory is the most suitable one to define the current cultural moment. Performatism is also considered to be one of the leading and most systematic theories that tries to chart cultural changes in the contemporary art and literature breaking away from the split concepts of sign to the unified one aiming for specific closure of the work. Monism, double framing, opaque subjectivity and theism are its salient features which need to be explored and analysed in the work to ascertain if performatism really be the answer to the dilemma of defining literary moment after postmodernism. Textual analysis of Poet X suggests that there is substantial evidence of performatist features in the novel yet there are also certain postmodern features present in the background.
Ph. D Scholar, Department of English, Faculty of Social Sciences, Air University, Islamabad, Pakistan
Prof. Dr. Munawar Iqbal Ahmad
Professor, Department of English, Faculty of Social Sciences, Air University, Islamabad, Pakistan