Laura Finch

Andrew W. Mellon Graduate Fellow in the Humanities

20132014 Forum on Violence

Laura Finch

Comparative Literature

Making a Killing: Shame, Violence, and Finance in the Contemporary US Novel

My project on finance and the contemporary US novel is an engagement with the difficulty of representing the violence wrought by finance capital. If the economics of late capitalism tend to obfuscate the violence on which they are predicated, then finance sells itself at a further remove, as an abstract and depersonalised transactionalism. My work reads contemporary novels about the financial crisis in their attempts to suture abstract violence to a legible narrative form. I also read financial novels of the last thirty years in order to parse the demands made on the US citizen as a financial subject, and the affective damage wrought by the narration of the subject in the terms of high finance.