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Writing under the influence

Focusing through the concept of influence, this collection considers the entire breadth of Alan Hollinghurst’s Booker Prize-winning writing. It addresses critical issues threaded through the work of Britain’s most important contemporary novelist. Chapters encompass provocative and timely subjects ranging from gay visual cultures and representations, to Victorian, modernist and contemporary literature, as well as race and empire, theatre and cinema, eros, translation and economics. Revealing the often troubled tissue of weighty affect that lies beneath the poise and control of Hollinghurst’s writing, this book addresses readers interested in question of subjectivity, history and desire, as well as those curious about biography and literary experimentation. Alongside contributions by distinguished international critics, the book includes an unpublished interview with Hollinghurst and the eminent biographer Hermione Lee. With critical energy and creative flair, Alan Hollinghurst: Writing Under the Influence provokes a new account of Hollinghurst’s work that is both authoritative and innovative.

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Author: Philip Tew

Jim Crace is one of the most imaginative of contemporary novelists. The author of nine novels, he has received great public and intellectual acclaim across the UK, Europe, Australia and the United States, and was awarded the National Book Critics Circle Fiction prize (USA) for Being Dead in 2000. This study is an extended critical examination of Crace's oeuvre based on extensive interviews with the novelist, including discussions of his work from his first worldwide bestseller, Continent (1986), up to The Pesthouse (2007). Its treatment of themes, contexts and narrative strategies illuminates the literary and critical contexts within which Crace operates, situating him as one of the most adventurous and challenging of Britain's twenty-first century authors.

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Christine Berberich and Arthur Aughey

yen’ (Barnes, 1998 : 58) has been perfectly illustrated, as Gary Day demonstrated in Chapter 11 , in Julian Barnes’ novel England England where England’s heritage – real or embellished – has been turned into a highly marketable commodity. The fact that England’s past has been (ab)used for commercial or political means is one that has preoccupied a host of contemporary

in These Englands
Jill Liddington

highly marriageable heiresses; but despite their father's best endeavours to provide legal safeguards, both experienced the tribulations which contemporary novelists depicted as ensnaring wealthy young women. 25 Their father had tried to guard against unscrupulous suitors; but by 1828 Elizabeth secretly planned to marry a Captain Sutherland of the 92nd Highlanders. This relationship was to trigger a cache of litigious correspondence which, more than any other personal Walker papers

in Female Fortune
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Rachel Sykes, Jennifer Daly, and Anna Maguire Elliot

. Marilynne Robinson analyses the growing significance and contrasting ‘unhipness’ of Robinson's work, suggesting new and exciting ways forward for Robinson scholarship. As editors, one rationale for putting together this collection was our suspicion that despite winning major international literary prizes for each of her novels, the central themes and settings of the author's work are often read as old fashioned and that Robinson is rarely considered a contemporary novelist. 2 The grounding of her fiction in the primarily

in Marilynne Robinson
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Alexa Alfer and Amy J. Edwards de Campos

gritty social realism, at one end of the spectrum, or anglicised reworkings of the nouveau roman , at the other, were considered to be desirable literary models, it was somewhat easier to dismiss Byatt as an elitist or overly intellectual literary figure than it is in today’s literary climate, where more and more contemporary novelists are rediscovering the power of narrative to grapple with

in A. S. Byatt
Contemporary Irish and Scottish fiction
Glenda Norquay and Gerry Smyth

. There is in fact a long experimental tradition in Irish literature that continues to impact upon contemporary novelistic discourse. During the nineteenth century, the novel’s troubled status was primarily to do with the anomalousness of the colonial society which Irish writers were attempting to represent. Long before international modernism rendered self-conscious the relationship between form (representation) and content (reality), the complex resonances accruing from that relationship were laid bare (often unconsciously or unwittingly) by novelists such as Maria

in Across the margins
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Rachel Sykes

its precursor is based. Yet reviewers described Enon as a ‘risky’ follow-up, a novel that ‘should be boring’ but somehow manages to enthral through a profoundly ‘unusual’ narrative, which, like Tinkers, has very little narrative ‘event’.16 Several contemporary novelists who share Harding’s history of rejection have also felt forced to write in defence of their ‘quiet’ publications. Andrew Ladd, a novelist and editor for literary magazine Ploughshares, criticises the industry’s ‘schizophrenic’ relationship with quiet novels, describing them as the ‘quagmire’ of

in The quiet contemporary American novel
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Literary criticism and the colonial public
Christopher Hilliard

sociologists (especially Americans), their idea of social science was an ethnographic one that could be compared meaningfully with the sorts of explorations contemporary novelists engaged in. Robert S. Lynd, co-author of the American community study Middletown and one of Scrutiny ’s favoured social scientists, made such a comparison himself. 23 Q. D. Leavis’s exemplary practitioner of ‘the

in The cultural construction of the British world
Social semantics and experiments in fiction
Lynne Hapgood

-ending-of-an-ending that the faintest hope of change lingers as a possibility. ‘What is to-day … alleged to be “pessimism” ’, as 136 Margaret Harkness, novelist another contemporary novelist, Thomas Hardy, wrote as he looked back over his long writing career in ‘Apology’ (1922), ‘is, in truth, only such “questionings” in the exploration of reality’ (Hardy, 1962: 526). The psychology of silence Written hard on the heels of A City Girl, Out of Work is a very different kind of realist novel. The title alerts us first. It announces new subject matter dealing specifically with the

in Margaret Harkness