“Resolving Dichotomies: John Cheever’s Comic Imagination and Expelled as Debut”
Prof. Tanutrushna Panigrahi

Often called as the Chekov of suburbs, John Cheever‘s literary errands and his status as an American canonical writer have remained underprojected and the critical attention he received was very often silent about the several dynamics of his art including the comic dimension. The objectives of this study are to argue that Cheever is a leading exponent of what is called the ―new comic‖ of the American literature and the corresponding vision unfolds itself in his first short story Expelled that inaugurates his five-decade long productive literary engagement. This research paper examines his place in the American novelistic tradition, his contributions to it and the uniqueness of his vision through the analysis of the story Expelled. The discussion also highlights how as a debut literary piece the story exhibits the germination of the entire body of work. Expelled is a satire, an ironical statement and a moral protest by an adolescent school dropout against the American Prepschool Education system that inhibits creativity and freedom. It also is an intense expression of a young literary artist who discovers himself as a misfit not only in the prepschool but also the New England puritanical psyche. The nucleus of the Cheeveresque successfully anticipates, as early as 1930, the literary promises of Cheever‘s in the future.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijll.v8n2a7