meta·​fic·​tion | \ ˌme-tə-ˈfik-shən How to pronounce metafiction (audio) \

Definition of metafiction

: fiction which refers to or takes as its subject fictional writing and its conventions

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Other Words from metafiction

metafictional \ ˌme-​tə-​ˈfik-​shnəl How to pronounce metafiction (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
metafictionist \ ˌme-​tə-​ˈfik-​sh(ə-​)nist How to pronounce metafiction (audio) \ noun

Examples of metafiction in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Looser and funnier than its predecessor, Part II is also a twisty piece of metafiction — the movie Julie is trying and failing to make is, of course, The Souvenir. —N.J. Rachel Handler, Vulture, 20 July 2021 True to form, The Good Fight is transparent about its shortcomings, turning the discussion over RBL’s future into a metafiction about the show’s own challenges in turning the page. Scott Tobias, Vulture, 24 June 2021 With cryptocurrency, the arrangement is more like a shared metafiction, and the instability of the genre is, presumably, part of the thrill. Elizabeth Kolbert, The New Yorker, 22 Apr. 2021 William Greaves’s multilayered metafiction—based on a scripted scene of a couple in crisis—is a documentary about the very nature of fictional films, and the authority of a director trying to make them. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 14 Oct. 2020 That warehouse, incidentally, eventually contains its own warehouse, which contains its own warehouse, and so on and so forth: a metaphor within a metaphor, wrapped inside a towering work of metafiction. Tyler Aquilina,, 4 Sep. 2020 One critic even sees it as a subtle metafiction about the relationship between actual people and the people in books. Michael Dirda, Washington Post, 25 Sep. 2019 Patricia Highsmith’s identity thief in The Talented Mr. Ripley is perhaps the icon of the grifter genre; the Philip Roth impersonator in Roth’s novel Operation Shylock merged scam fiction and metafiction to fascinating effect. Lily Meyer, The Atlantic, 27 Nov. 2019 In the 1960s and 1970s, he was associated with a group of postmodern writers — Thomas Pynchon, William Gass, John Barth, Donald Barthelme — who questioned the limitations of realism and explored metafiction and self-reflexivity. Yu-yun Hsieh, New York Times, 27 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'metafiction.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of metafiction

1960, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of metafiction was in 1960

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Last Updated

25 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Metafiction.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Sep. 2021.

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