American Theorists of the Novel: Henry James, Lionel by Peter Rawlings

By Peter Rawlings

The American theorists: Henry James, Lionel Trilling and Wayne C. sales space have revolutionized our figuring out of narrative and feature every one championed the radical as an artwork shape. ideas from their paintings became a part of the cloth of novel feedback this day, influencing theorists, authors and readers alike.

Emphasizing the an important dating among the works of those 3 critics, Peter Rawlings explores their realizing of the radical shape, and investigates their principles on:

  • realism and representation
  • authors and narration
  • point of view and centres of consciousness
  • readers, interpreting and interpretation
  • moral intelligence.

Rawlings demonstrates the significance of James, Trilling and sales space for modern literary conception and obviously introduces serious strategies that underlie any research of narrative. American Theorists of the Novel is helpful analyzing for a person with an curiosity in American severe conception, or the style of the novel.

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Extra info for American Theorists of the Novel: Henry James, Lionel Trilling and Wayne C. Booth (Routledge Critical Thinkers)

Example text

The penultimate section, ‘After James, Trilling, and Booth’, will look at where these critics have left us, and at the current state of the debates in which they are involved. The book concludes with a guide to ‘Further reading’ on these three theorists. 111 4 6 7 9 0 1 4 6 7 111 9 0 4 6 7 9 0111 4 6 7 911 KEY IDEAS 111 1 4 6 7 9 0 1 THREE PERSPECTIVES ON THE NOVEL 4 6 7 111 9 0 4 6 7 9 0111 4 6 7 911 This chapter has at its centre the various ways in which James, Trilling, and Booth defined the novel and its purpose.

In a shrewd analysis of James’s prefaces in relation to realism, Booth helps us to see why James believed that a simple devotion to facts was unhealthy for Trollope and Zola, and for the novel in general. Booth argues (1961: 42) that ‘intensity’ is at the centre of James’s realism. The intensity, that is, of an illusion of the real. To try for the real, as Trollope and Zola appeared to be doing, was to confuse art and life. Life may be an affair of the real, but there can only be an illusion of the real in novels.

It begins by focusing o Henry James’s ‘The Art of Fiction’ (1884), an essay that set the agenda for contemporary debates and later discussions. After considering James’s approach to fiction and the novel in this influential essay, will be much easier to see why Lionel Trilling recruits it as his main ally in the cultural and political battles of the 1940s and beyond. It will also become clear, as we turn to Wayne C. Booth and The Rhetoric of Fiction, why Booth had mixed feelings about James’s theories of the novel.

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