The Pros And Cons Of Literary Journalism In Literature

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In 1960s, literary journalism emerged as a new hybrid genre that combines the best practices of both fact and fiction, journalism and literature. The emerging genre is marked by the publication of two non-fictional books written by Truman Capote and Norman Mailer; namely In Cold Blood (1965) and The Armies of the Night (1968) respectively. At the same year of its publication, Mailer’s book has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction. Since then, it has been the focus of a cornucopia of critical investigation as a major work of American nonfiction. Literary journalism has various labels that are used interchangeably. Leonira Flis points out that the “terminological inconsistencies” inherent in this hybrid genre have led critics to employ various concepts to label this genre such as “nonfiction novel”, “faction”, “historiographic metafiction”, or “historical narrative” (1-2). Other labels of…show more content…
However, despite the early use of this technique, the modern version differs from the old one as the historic circumstances and intentions of these literary journalists were rather unique to this era, as was the proliferation of writers, new and old, who quickly adopted the style for their own reasons. In the “Introduction” to The New Journalism (1975), Tom Wolfe states that the emerging genre was a response to the crisis of realism in the literary context. Wolfe found out that the intersection of novel and journalism was largely due to the abandonment of realism by authors and the need to bridge the gap between fact and fiction. For Wolfe, the novel had been “an American dream” in the forties, fifties, and the early sixties of the twentieth century. It “was no mere literary form. It was a psychological phenomenon. It was a cortical fever"
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