Critics and writers interested in moving beyond postmodernism have, over the last twenty years, argued that there has been a shift in what we might call – using Raymond Williams’ phrase – ‘the structure of feeling’ within American narrative. This shift bears out Williams’ view that ‘as the structure changes, new means are perceived and realized, while old means come to appear empty and artificial,’ (p33, Williams). The general aim of this PhD is to examine this change, and the new means of presenting subjectivity in contemporary America. Central to the project is David Foster Wallace’s call (in his 1997 essay ‘E Unibus Plurum: Television and US Fiction’) for a ‘new sincerity’ to counter the ‘eschew[ed] self-consciousness and hip fatigue,’ (p81) of postmodernism. Wallace’s work, and that of others, is characterized by a subject-connected rather than a subject-centered narrative. More specifically, I will examine how the subject-centered narrative, involving the narcissistic and solipsistic devices of postmodern irony and schizophrenic subjectivity, is beginning to be replaced by subjectivities of connectivity and structures of affect that lead to empathically responsive systems of language. However, while the idea of a ‘connected’ subject is often regarded as leading to a positive outcome in the work of British writers like David Mitchell or Hari Kunzru, I suspect that the new view of subjectivity in the work of American writers such as Wallace, Danielewski, and Ellis is permeated with an anxiety that survives from and perhaps intensifies the framework of postmodernism. Much of this anxiety revolves around the complexities of relocating a sense of ‘sincere’ subjectivity within the collective. In the work I propose to examine there is a continual tension between the desires of the individual and the desires of the collective, ‘public’, social body. Through detailed readings of contemporary American novels, I aim to explore how this ‘diagnosis’ of the subject compares to earlier analyses of the postmodern ‘condition’ by cultural theorists like Christopher Lasch or Patrick O’Donnell and what it might say about the ethics of existing with others in a post-postmodern world.