A brilliant satire of mass culture and the numbing effects of technology, White Noise tells the story of Jack Gladney, a teacher of Hitler studies at a liberal arts college in Middle America. Jack and his fourth wife, Babette, bound by their love, fear of death, and four ultramodern offspring, navigate the rocky passages of family life to the background babble of brand-name consumerism. Then a lethal black chemical cloud, unleashed by an industrial accident, floats over there lives, an "airborne toxic event" that is a more urgent and visible version of the white noise engulfing the Gladneys—the radio transmissions, sirens, microwaves, and TV murmurings that constitute the music of American magic and dread.
Chairman of the department of Hitler studies at a Midwestern college, Jack Gladney is accidently exposed to a cloud of noxious chemicals, part of a world of the future that is doomed because of misused technology, artifical products and foods, and overpopulation. PW appreciated DeLillo's "bleak, ironic'' vision, calling it ``not so much a tragic view of history as a macabre one.'' January
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A must read
I loved this book the first time I read it, it's by far DeLillo's best work. If you like clever, witty books this will surely become your favorite. I wish they'd make a movie out of this book -- get the Coen brothers to adapt and direct it. Instant best picture of the decade. Yet as great as that would be to see, just reading the book, with DeLillo's brilliant prose, is the best entertainment to be found. I assure you that your iPad is woefully incomplete without "White Noise" in you iBook-shelf.
wow! what an amazing book. a true classic. love the character development. plot is strange, but the writing superb.
Written format of white noise aka static
This book has somehow topped my last most hated book; the bluest eye by Toni Morrison but I hated that one b/c of the confusing shifts of character’s point of view, especially when 2 different characters were the same gender but different ages. But this book, has it to where a character such as Howard Dunlap, the German teacher is judged by a character who is creepier than him. Also scenarios such as Babette’s explaination of erotica is something that no one would every be that picky about in real life and the conversations such as that b/t Heinrich and Jack about whether it’s raining or not as to create some intellectual argument that somehow dwells into philosophy (nihilism). But at the same time, Delilo write Jack’s thoughts about Heinrich as if he thinks Heinrich is going to end being the same as the prisoner he plays chess with. And the only reason I only read this was to get a good grade on some reading responses that are going to be turned in late anyways.