Richard Powers, Prisoner’s Dilemma

Martin Kich (Wright State University)
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Three Farmers on Their Way to a Dance

can be fairly described as an attempt to recover some historical understanding of cultural artifacts now largely isolated from their contexts and of familial connections that remain, at best, very tenuously recoverable, then Powers’ second novel,

Prisoners’ Dilemma

, might be described as a historian’s attempt to escape history through alternating immersions in facts and fantasies that define his familial relationships. The main character is Eddie Hobson, a history teacher in his early fifties who has moved from one teaching position to another without markedly advancing his career. The degree to which his peripatetic career has been a manifestation of his own dissatisfactions or of his employers’ dissatisfactions is never made entirely…

1850 words

Citation: Kich, Martin. "Prisoner’s Dilemma". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 March 2024 [, accessed 13 April 2024.]

21625 Prisoner’s Dilemma 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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