Thomas Gaiman's American Gods

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or does not contain: ‘there are things that people who like a genre are looking for in their fiction: the things that titillate, the things that satisfy’ (Gaiman & Ishiguro, 04/06/15). Though American Gods is suffused with elements of myths and folk tales, and therefore shares many structural similarities with these, the intertextual nature of his work opens up for the possibility of breaking or broadening their rules. In a similar way, Gaiman plays with fantasy readers’ expectations of resolution in the novel. The coming battle between the gods is the apparent premise of the novel, yet there is no conclusion to it; Shadow eventually discovers and reveals Wednesday’s ulterior motive to the other gods, and thereby effectively dismantles the…show more content…
Along with the new gods, the supernatural beings and gods of the world’s mythologies and folk tales are likewise present in America. These beings are all alive, walking among and interacting with humans (though not always to the benefit of the latter). In the novel, Gaiman also develops the idea of the pan-pantheon further, recounting that several incarnations of one god can exist in multiple places in the world at the same time. Wednesday is the Nordic god Odin, yet, he states that he has never been outside of America (128). However, the postscript of American Gods recounts the meeting between Shadow and Odin in Iceland, and even though this Odin may look similar to Wednesday, his accent is “strange”, and he will not take the blame for Wednesday’s actions: Wednesday might have been him, but he is not Wednesday (634). It is therefore possible to find multiple incarnations of one god (in this case Odin) wherever people, who believe in the god, have travelled to and settled for even just a short while. American Gods is interspersed with short stories that tell of the gods and beings that have been brought to America; one of the first of these, tell

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