Whispers and Dances: (De)Construction of Heterochronism in Alice Munro’s “Walker Brothers Cowboy”
Keywords:Alice Munro, "Walker Brothers Cowboy", heterotopia, heterochronia, geocriticism, geophilosophy, rhizomes, smoothing
Alice Munro stitches a patchwork of short stories in her 1968 short story collection, Dance of the Happy Shades. The collection is constructed as a rhizomatic multiplicity wherein stories relate to each other in a rhizomatic pattern, as off-shoots of the same organic body. Each story in Dance of the Happy Shades is also internally constructed in the same way as a multiplicity, where micro-narratives are assembled as pieces of a patchwork to form a whole. This paper, however, explores only the opening story “Walker Brothers Cowboy” through a geocritical and geophilosophical lens and shows how Munro builds it through the same pattern. The story comprises multiple micro-narratives of different lengths and forms, each of which functions as part of this organic growth. The essay also shows how the juxtaposition of such micro-narratives, and of smoothing and striating images, creates a heterochronian heterotopia at the climax of the story.
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