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The genre making of Restoration fiction

Novel horizons analyses how narrative prose fiction developed during the English Restoration. It argues that following the reopening of the theatres in 1660, generic changes within dramatic texts occasioned an intense debate within prologues and introductions. This discussion about the poetics of a genre was echoed in the paratextual material of prose fictions: in trans¬lators’ introductions, authorial prefaces, and other accompanying material. In the absence of an official poetics that defined prose fiction, paratexts ful¬filled this function and informed readers about the changing features of the budding genre. This study traces the piecemeal development of these generic boundaries and describes the generic competence of readers through the detailed analysis of paratexts and actual narrative prose fictions. Rather than trying to canonize individual Restoration novels, Novel horizons covers the surviving textual material widely, focusing on narrative prose fictions published between 1660 and 1710. Drawing on genre theories by Jacques Derrida and M.M. Bakhtin, the study follows an approach to genre that sees a textual corpus as an archive that projects into the future, thereby enabling later readers and writers to experiment with forms and themes. In addition to tracing the paratextual poetics of Restoration fiction, a substantial section of this book covers the state of the art of fiction-writing during the period. It discusses aspects such as character development, narrative point of view, and questions of fictionality and realism in order to describe how these features were first used in popular fiction at the time.

Shifting forms
Gerd Bayer

common trait’, adding that the ‘category we now call fiction was Seventeenth-century writing: shifting forms 61 a “wild space”, unmapped and unarticulated’.19 One clearly needs to approach this territory without the blinkers that come with an overly restricted sense of generic purity. One of the best descriptions of how such a multi-generic genealogy of Restoration literature might look has been provided by Percy Adams in Travel Literature and the Evolution of the Novel. This study is particularly noteworthy because it concentrates on both aesthetic and critical

in Novel horizons
Lord Rochester andRestoration modernity
Matthew C. Augustine

, with a play of 1700), and a modest selection of prose, the only example of which longer than a few pages is Aphra Behn’s Oroonoko (1688). There is no court poetry, no devotional verse, no tragedy or tragicomedy, epic or pseudo-epic; neither do we find anything of Cavendish and Philips, of Marvell and Oldham, Filmer or Sidney. Though not exactly in the sense meant by Rochester in libelling his monarch, when measured against the varied and vibrant literary culture of these decades, the serving of Restoration literature offered by the Norton might well be thought

in Aesthetics of contingency
Satire and panegyric as forms of historical writing
Noelle Gallagher

what Michael McKeon has termed the ‘categorial instability’ of Restoration literature; but the boundary between history and the two ‘sister’ genres was especially problematic in this period, because satire and panegyric were understood as sharing many of the formal and thematic features of history proper. 7 Both satire and panegyric could, like history, be traced back to

in Historical literatures
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Remapping early modern literature
Matthew C. Augustine

(1897), ‘it was not monarchy only that he received into England, but a fresh era in literature and the arts’. 24 W. V. Moody and R. M. Lovett’s popular textbook A History of English Literature (1902) tells much the same story. For them, too, ‘The date of 1660 is one of the most significant in English literature, as it is in the history of English politics’. Like Macaulay, they see Restoration literature and culture as a direct reaction – indeed overreaction – to what they call the Puritans’ ‘absorption in otherworldliness’. 25 R. H. Fletcher’s 1916 A History of

in Aesthetics of contingency
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Spenser, Donne, and the trouble of periodization
Yulia Ryzhik

Dawn’. 30 James Simpson, 1350 – 1547: Reform and Cultural Revolution (Oxford: Oxford University Press 2004); Steven N. Zwicker, ‘Is There Such a Thing as Restoration Literature?’, Huntington Library Quarterly , 69.3 (2006 September), 425–50. 31 See, for instance, Curtis Perry, The Making of Jacobean Culture: James I and the Renegotiation of Elizabethan Literary Practice (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997); Heather Dubrow, Echoes of Desire: English Petrarchism and Its Counterdiscourses (Ithaca

in Spenser and Donne
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Making novel readers
Gerd Bayer

antiquity (Chapter 2). It closes with the aforementioned outline of a theory of genre genesis that draws on Derridean and Bakhtinian notions of time, the archive, and the addressivity of literary works. In Part II, the focus shifts to Restoration literature. Following a critical description of late seventeenth-century changes in generic systems (Chapter 3), the next chapter turns to dramatic paratexts and their engagement of readerly competence (Chapter  4), presenting the period as heavily inscribed with generic renegotiations. Drawing on a comprehensive investigation of

in Novel horizons
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Historicism, whither wilt?
Christopher D’Addario

his essay in this volume. 26 See S. N. Zwicker, ‘Is there such a thing as Restoration literature?’, HLQ, 69:3 (2006), pp. 425–50. 27 For some of the statistics on this breakdown in censorship and its impact on print output, see Robertson’s essay in the present volume. 28 M. McKeon, ‘Theory and practice in historical method’, in Coiro and Fulton (eds), Rethinking Historicism, pp. 56–7. See also on the benefits and necessities of periodisation, A. Scaglione, ‘The periodization of the Renaissance and the question of mannerism’, in Besserman (ed.), The Challenge of

in Texts and readers in the Age of Marvell
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Of 1647, theatre closure and reinvention
Rachel Willie

University Press, 1928), esp. pp. 35–59. 28 James Fraser, Triennial Travels, 2 vols (University of Aberdeen MS 2538/1), I: fol. 37v. 29 The Actors Remonstrance (London, 1643 [1644]). 30 Steven N. Zwicker, ‘Is There Such a Thing as Restoration Literature?’, Huntington Library Quarterly, 69 (2006), pp. 425–49 (pp. 425–7). 31 See in particular, Nancy Klein Maguie, Regicide and Restoration (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1992). 32 Edward Howard, The Change of Crownes (1667). Folger MS Add 948/V.b. 329, fol. 34r. 33 Robert Latham and William Matthews, eds, The

in Staging the revolution
Elaine Hobby

-Martínez, and Juan A. Prieto-Pablos (eds), The Female Wits: Women and Gender in Restoration Literature and Culture (Huelva: University of Huelva, 2006), pp. 249–263. For Culpeper’s biography, see Benjamin Woolley, The Herbalist: Nicholas Culpeper and the Fight for Medical Freedom (London: Harper Collins, 2004). 33 Assuming only ten editions by 1604, when in fact the book was issued many more times than that, Paul Slack lists it as the sixth-best-selling medical work

in Religion and life cycles in early modern England