Josh Toth teaches literature and critical theory at Grant MacEwan University and is coeditor (with Neil Brooks) of The Mourning After: Attending the Wake of Postmodernism.
Toth’s central focus is, simply, strangeness—or those characters who adamantly resist being fixed in any given category of identity. As with the theorists employed (Nancy, i ek, Derrida, Freud, Hegel), the subjects and literature considered are as encompassing as possible: from the work of Herman Melville, William Faulkner, James Weldon Johnson, and Nella Larsen to that of Philip K. Dick, Woody Allen, Larry David, and Bob Dylan; from the rise of nativism in the early twentieth century to object-oriented ontology and the twenty-first-century zombie craze; from ragtime and the introduction of sound in American cinema to the exhaustion of postmodern metafiction.
Toth argues that American literature, music, film, and television can show us the path toward a new ethic, one in which we organize identity around the stranger rather than resorting to tactics of pure exclusion or inclusion. Ultimately, he provides a new narrative approach to otherness that seeks to realize a truly democratic form of community.