Jillian Cadell on Normal People and COVID-19 for CNN

Jillian Caddell

Dr Jillian Caddell, Lecturer in Nineteenth-Century American Literature in the School of English, has written an opinion piece for CNN on the new adaptation of the Sally Rooney novel Normal People.

The piece, entitled ‘Watching ‘Normal People’ is irresistible in abnormal times’, explores one of the most intimate scenes of the series (spoilers ahead!).

Jillian discusses the use of video call technology in the relationship of the protagonists, Connell and Marianne, and describes how she has found similarities in the current situation.

Jillian says: ‘would I care so much about the scene of Marianne distantly watching over Connell if I had seen it a few months ago? I certainly would have cared differently. “Normal People,” Rooney’s novel and the Hulu series, are pre-Covid-19 productions, but both perfectly understand the desires we place on communication technologies and the ways they nearly always come up short’.

The full article can be read on CNN’s website, here: