Farhat Iftekharuddin's thesis on Brautigan
Richard Brautigan: A Critical Look at Trout Fishing in America, In Watermelon Sugar and The Abortion (Abstract)

by Farhat M. Iftekharuddin
Oklahoma State University

Findings and conclusions. Richard Brautigan who has often been cast as a writer of "hippie" fiction of the 1960s has proven himself otherwise with important novels like Trout Fishing in America, In Watermelon Sugar, and The Abortion: An Historical Romance 1966, novels that have made their impression and left their mark on the genre itself. An accomplished author, Brautigan's are marked by a personal vision that is representative of many aspects of the American imagination. His genius lies in his ability to portray old themes of human alienation, broken dreams, and loneliness in completely new images that are often startling in their originality.

Brautigan's special appeal to readers of all ages lies in his ability to capture the remnants of the American dream and frame it within either a lost pastoral background, or a utopian hope for a future society, or even to transform that dream into a sad burlesque. By doing so, the author has produced works that, on one hand, incorporate the sense of growing disaster, and on the other, provide the notion of possibilities within an increasingly detached contemporary society. The creative energy of Brautigan's works illumines the past anew and as a result certain aspects of the American imagination take on a deeper perspective and acquire a richer hue. Brautigan's novels are an assertion of his own identity in the development of the American myth.

Dissertation Abstracts International? 50(9)
March 1990: 2896A
Order Number: DA9005755

Copyright note: My purpose in putting this material on the web is to provide Brautigan scholars and fans with ideas for further research into Richard Brautigan's work. It is used here in accordance with fair use guidelines. No attempt is made regarding commercial duplication and/or dissemination. If you are the author of this article or hold the copyright and would like me to remove your article from the Brautigan Archives, please contact me at birgit at cybernetic-meadows.net.