Victory Garden

Description (in English): 

The Gulf War and its media frenzy serves as the backdrop for this Dickensian tale of campus politics, seduction, burglary, dissent, unsafe driving, and war.

(Source: Victory Garden - Eastgate Systems)

Victory Garden is a hypertext novel which is set during the Gulf War, in 1991. The story centres on Emily Runbird and the lives and interactions of the people connected with her life. Although Emily is a central figure to the story and networked lives of the characters, there is no one character who could be classed as the protagonist. Each character in Victory Garden lends their own sense of perspective to the story and all characters are linked through a series of bridges and connections.

There is no set "end" to the story. Rather there are multiple nodes that provide a sense of closure for the reader. In one such "ending", Emily appears to die. However, in another "ending", she comes home safe from the war. How the story plays out depends on the choices the reader makes during their navigation of the text. The passage of time is uncertain as the reader can find nodes that focus on the present, flashbacks or even dreams and the nodes are frequently presented in a non-linear fashion. The choices the reader makes can lead them to focus on individual characters, meaning that while there are a series of characters in the story the characters focused on can change with each reading, or a particular place.

Upon entering the work the reader is presented with a series of choices as to how to navigate the story. The reader may enter the text through a variety of means: the map of the 'garden', the lists of paths, or by the composition of a sentence. Each of these paths guides the reader though fragmented pieces of the story (in the form of node) and by reading and rereading many different paths the reader receives different perspectives of the different characters.

(Source: Wikipedia entry on Victory Garden)

Critical writing that references this work:

Title Author Year
Footnotes in Fiction: A Rhetorical Approach Edward Maloney 2005
For Thee: A Response to Alice Bell Stuart Moulthrop 2010
From Text to Hypertext: Decentering the Subject in Fiction, Film, the Visual Arts, and Electronic Media Silvio Gaggi 1997
Fuzzy Coherence: Making Sense of Continuity in Hypertext Narratives Jukka Tyrkkö 2011
Hyperfiction Moulthrop’s Computer Novel Weaves a Web of Alternative Endings John Dunn 1994
Hyperfiction: Novels for the Computer Robert Coover 1993
Hyperfiktion und interaktive Narration Beat Suter 2000
Hyperizons: A study of interactive reading and readership in hyperfiction theory and practice, with an outlook to hyperfictions' future inspired by the reading of Sophie's World and The Pandora Directive Lisbeth Klastrup 1997
Hypertext and Ethnographic Representation: A Case Study Rulon Matley Wood 2012
Hypertext Fiction in the Twilight Zone Raine Koskimaa 1998
Hypertextual Fiction on the Internet: A Structural and Narratological Analysis Roman Zenner 2008
Hyperworks: On Digital Literature and Computer Games Anna Gunder 2004
Internet Hyperfiction: Can it ever Become a Widely Popular Artform? Nikolaj Jensen 2001
Le récit littéraire interactif. Narrativité et interactivité Serge Bouchardon 2005
Literary Hypertext: The Passing of the Golden Age Robert Coover 1999
Magister Macintosh Richard Gess 1993
Media-Specific Metalepsis in 10:01 Alice Bell 2014
Multimedia Criticism Eric Dean Rasmussen 2003
Ontological Boundaries and Methodological Leaps: The Importance of Possible Worlds Theory for Hypertext Fiction (and Beyond) Alice Bell 2011
Operations of writing, Interview with Stuart Moulthrop Roberto Simanowski 2000
Screen shots: 
Victory Garden cover image
Victory Garden map image
Victory Garden screenshot
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Record posted by: 
Jill Walker Rettberg