Abstract

McCarthy's characteristic interest in questions of determinism and agency is perhaps nowhere as evident as it is in Blood Meridian and No Country for Old Men, yet little attention has been given to the way in which these novels are linked through the imagery of coinage, circulation, and currency. In this article, I argue that McCarthy's conception of agency is explicitly tied to a criticism of economic modernity that traces its history from the scalp-hunting of the Glanton gang to the calm collection methods of Anton Chigurh, outlining a trajectory of spiritual decline that reaches its culmination in the final years of the twentieth century.

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