Narrating, telling, and speaking
in Novel horizons
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Turning from paratextual poetics to actual prose fictions, this chapter discusses how English Restoration writers experimented with narrative form. It shows that various elements of what, in the eighteenth century, will come to define the novel as a new genre were already in use in the late seventeenth century. Taking issues with the supposedly ahistorical nature of narrative theory and its terminology, the chapters shows that many narratological concepts are built on a (high)modernist version of the novel, which, for instance, clearly differentiates between authors and narrators, a distinction only vaguely drawn in the early modern age, when many works were still performed aloud rather than silently read.

Novel horizons

The genre making of Restoration fiction


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