Gerd Bayer
Search for other papers by Gerd Bayer in
Current site
Google Scholar
Paratext and prose
Abstract only
Log-in for full text

Building on the previous chapter, the debate here turns to paratextual poetics in narrative prose fiction during the English Restoration. While mostly drawing on a broad selection of texts published between 1660 and 1710, the chapter also includes a section that discusses paratexts of major prose fictions from earlier periods, including works like Amadis of Gaul and Don Quixote. Restoration paratexts emphasised the difference between the form of the novel and the romance; between courtly and more pedestrian forms of entertainment; and between moralistic and more hedonistic forms of consumption. While Congreve’s preface to Incognita covers much of this territory, it was by no means a text of singular quality or conceptual depth. Individual sections of this chapter address the manner in which paratexts and works like Aphra Behn’s Love Letters address and define their readers and/or dedicatees; how the importance of readerly and/or critical judgment is stressed and simultaneously seen as always necessarily non-final; and the importance of situation narrative prose fiction at a specific location within the debate about invention and representation. The body of the reader is described as a contentious location that authors both evoke and resist; and this porous border is also demonstrated as existing between paratexts and the works they accompany.

  • Collapse
  • Expand

All of MUP's digital content including Open Access books and journals is now available on manchesterhive.


Novel horizons

The genre making of Restoration fiction


All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 97 18 3
Full Text Views 42 0 0
PDF Downloads 16 1 0