In A.A. Milne’s classic children’s book Winnie-the-Pooh, Piglet invents his entire family background – including uncles and grandfathers – from an old signpost next to his house. Piglet, then, blends signs that may be said to exist in a reality outside the 100 Acres Wood with a playful use of semantics to create his own reality.
This module investigates postmodern fiction and film with special emphasis on metafiction, fictional self-consciousness and the creation of chinese box narratives. According to critic Brian McHale, postmodernist fiction is characterized by a particular interest in ontology – i.e. different modes of being. Thus texts in this module often involve multiple levels of reality and highlight the (blurry) boundaries between fiction and reality.
Everything you know is wrong (lecture by MP)
A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh, Chapter IX – In which Piglet is entirely surrounded by water (novel excerpt pp. 127-141)
Walt Disney, Winnie the Pooh, “Tigger stuck in a tree” (film)
Robert Shearman, The Dark Space in the House in the House in the Garden at the Centre of the World (short story)
Alison Bundy, The Onset of his Sickness (flash fiction)
Dallas Wiebe, Skyblue’s Essays (fictional essay)
Donald Barthelme, The Balloon (short story)
Paul Auster, City of Glass, pp. 1-33 (graphic novel, adapted by Paul Karasik and David Mazzuchelli)
Quentin Tarrantino, Pulp Fiction (film)Disney, The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh (film)