History, Fact, Fiction, and Meaning in the Bardo

The following can be posted as a written explanation (200-500 words) OR as an embedded audio/video (2-3 minutes). A good response will work with a key passage from the novel. Think about your initial response to the question you select as having to do the following: (1) assert a claim as an answer to the question, (2) choose a passage that helps you argue to support your claim, (3) offer an analysis/interpretation of your passage (show us what it means to you), and (4) make connections to other parts of the novel.

Choose one of the following to explore:

Although much of Lincoln in the Bardo is set in the bardo, this fantastical space between life and death, how does the novel also integrate and deal with the historical lived conditions of people in the antebellum time period? You might think about some of the particular references to dynamics of social class, gender, race, etc. Why is it relevant that this, in essence, ghost story also captures a story of the real experiences of Americans in the 19th century? Emphasize through close reading at least one key passage in your response.

Sample Solution